Chief Clark Talks FIBArk Safety

Written by Terry Clark, Salida Police Chief

Greetings from the Salida Police Department.  Summer is officially here, and I for one am glad. It seemed like a very long winter. Salida has many events planned for this year, and I wanted to touch upon a few issues that occur during this season. Hopefully, this will help avoid problems for all who enjoy the summer events.

This week is FIBArk, which is our biggest event and runs from Wednesday through Sunday. It looks like it will be a beautiful week for the event. The river is running high and fast. Use extreme caution as you near the river area. I would ask parents to pay close attention to your children as they play in the river area.

We anticipate another record setting crowd this year bringing a lot more people and traffic to town. With the increase in traffic, parking spaces are hard to find and pedestrian traffic increases. This makes the downtown area very hard to navigate. With this said, I would ask anyone who can walk instead of drive to downtown – please do so or ride your bicycle. If you do drive to the event, consider carpooling with others. This will help with the traffic issues and parking needs. A word of advice while downtown – be patient and courteous. Please make note that F St. will be closed off for the Parade starting at 2 a.m. on June 14th from the 7th St. to 1st St. intersections. Any vehicles left parked unattended in this area will be towed away after 8 a.m. that morning.

We will be enforcing the no camping rule as we did last year. This applies to anywhere in the City as well as the north side of the river. I noticed a huge difference from eliminating the camping last year, I believe the event and downtown area benefitted greatly from this.

Another reminder is to not bring any pets to the event. Pets are not allowed except for specific events where pets are part of the program. The problems arising from having pets in the park is that dogs tend to fight with other dogs, and this becomes a safety issue for dogs as well as people. The other obvious reason is sanitary issues with food and beverages in the park and dogs leaving their excrement on the ground. Do not leave your pets unattended in a vehicle as the inside temperatures can reach levels that can cause your pets to become ill or die.

Just a few reminders concerning alcohol consumption while attending the festivities. Please be responsible and do not over indulge. The rest of the festival participants will appreciate this. Also, consider where you are and how you will get home. You will see the liquor service areas as you enter the park, which tell you where you’re permitted to consume and carry your beverages. I hope everyone enjoys themselves, and, at the same time, keep moderation in mind.

As you enjoy the festivities, keep in mind that a lot of our neighbors and friends own businesses and homes in the downtown area. As night approaches, please respect their peace and quiet.

If anyone has questions or concerns about any of these issues or others, contact us at the Salida Police Department 719-539-6880. We wish you all a safe and enjoyable summer.