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Heightened security planned for upcoming Yolo County Fair

Fairgoers can expect heightened police presence, perimeter enforcement, bag checking and metal detectors this year.

WOODLAND, Calif. — The Yolo County Fair is set to kick off Wednesday. But recent shootings across the country have heightened fears and fair organizers say they're planning ahead and taking a number of precautions to ensure the public's safety.

The event is free and Yolo County Fair CEO Bart Vannucci said he wants everyone to have fun and feel at ease.

"The gates here open up where you typically come in," explained Vannucci. "The difference is, we're going to have a couple lines where we're going to be wanding and screening people just to prepare and make sure we have the right kind of guests coming in."

Around 150,000 guests are expected to attend over five days. CHP will be in charge this year and will be assisted by Davis, UC Davis, and Woodland police, as well as the Yolo County Sheriff's deputies and even private security.

There will only be two entrances and exits this year, one on Gum Avenue and another on Gibson Road.

"What we're trying to do is just have people understand, hey, it's going to take a little bit more time to get through the gate," said Vannucci. "It will definitely be worth it, just be patient with us."

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CHP Officer Rodney Fitzhugh explained what else attendees can expect.

"We will implement the use of metal detectors this year," said Fitzhugh. "There will also be bag searches. And we will also limit the amount of places that you can enter and exit the fair. On top of that, we will also have officers patrolling within the fairgrounds and we'll also have officers patrolling the perimeter."

Law enforcement's presence will also be highly visible across all 55 acres of the fairgrounds. 

"It doesn't matter whether you're enjoying the derby or if it's the rodeo or you're right here in the middle of the midway, we're going to have a lot of people," explained Vannucci. "It will be very visual, you'll see officers around a bit. And I just think that will help people to feel a little more comfortable that way."

Officer Fitzhugh said he wants the public to be able to put their troubles behind them when they come to the community event.

"While we do want you to be alert of your surroundings at all times, that's what we're here for, to ensure everyone has a good, safe time", said Fitzhugh.

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