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Safety, Security Top Of Mind As Crowds Of Avalanche Fans Gather Downtown During Stanley Cup Final

(CBS4) - "Avs to the cup, baby!" one fan yelled while making his way inside the Tivoli quad for one of Denver's largest Stanley Cup Final watch parties on Wednesday evening.

"I always think it's the Avs that are going to win," another Colorado Avalanche fan told CBS4.

While getting the win in Game 1 was top of mind for every fan, ensuring those without a ticket had a safe way to watch the game was the focus for those behind the scenes.

"We think we have a very safe venue," Auraria Campus Police Chief Michael Phibbs said.

He helped put together the watch party on the Tivoli quad, bringing in additional officers and adding top-of-the-line security systems.

"People are so worried about shootings in public and they should be, and it breaks my heart that we have to put in such extreme measures, but I want to make sure everybody here can feel comfortable and feel safe," he said.

Denver police while assisting the Auraria Campus is also making changes to cover the increased crowds downtown.

"We've been through this before. We understand how we need to modify our shift schedules, "Division Chief Ron Thomas said.

Thomas said the question they work to answer constantly is "Do we have adequate staffing to deal with the game and other events that are associated with the game?"

With more traffic in Denver and lots of celebrating, he says it's still best for anyone planning to watch the run for the cup downtown to plan ahead, give yourself extra time to get where you're going and expect there may be more police and security at your event.

Lifelong Denver resident and dedicated Avs fan Angela Hinojosa appreciates the response from law enforcement and security teams and says it's worth all the effort to keep things safe as she makes new memories with her two oldest boys.

"It is what it is, it's better to be safe than, you know, not safe," she said.

EMERGENCY COMPONENT - LOCAL

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