|Updated: 5/13/2013 12:11 pm
||Published: 5/13/2013 11:51 am
Tulsa’s International Mayfest kicks off Thursday at 11:00 a.m., but local law enforcement is already gearing up for the event.
Organizers tell FOX23 News they’re expecting upwards of 300,000 thousand festival goers downtown, enjoying all Mayfest has to offer.
Along with music, art and food, that includes alcohol. So law enforcement says they're using extra resources to keep alcohol consumption under control and over age.
Mary Jo Sartain has been chair of Mayfest for the last seven years. When it comes to minors drinking alcohol, she says it can be hard to spot.
“They're pretty good at doing it quietly, surreptitiously where we don't catch them.”
Sergeant Rick Treadwell with the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office says, “we don't find as many drunk kids as you might think would be there.”
Whether kids under 21 show up and try to drink or not, the ABLE commission and sheriff's office are teaming up to make sure they can't.
“We've trained [Mayfest] personnel,” Senior ABLE Agent Erik Smoot says. “We've made sure they know how to check IDs, we've made sure they know what an intoxicated people look like.”
We found out ABLE agent and sheriff’s deputies will in plain clothes and uniforms. They say they'll be looking for minors with alcohol, double checking ID enforcement, and keeping an eye out for anyone intoxicated and causing problems.
“People have made it a deal where we're going out and targeting events, that we're looking for problems at these events,” Smoot says. “We're not.”
Sartain tells FOX23 these precautions are just the nature of the beast at festivals where alcohol is served.
“It makes things a little bit more rowdy, but a lot more fun.”
If you are of age and plan to drink at Mayfest, AAA Oklahoma will be offering Tipsy Tow. If you're intoxicated, drivers will take you, your car and one rider up to 15 miles from Mayfest, whether you're a triple a member or not. The number for Tipsy Tow is 1 800 222 4357.
Mayfest runs Thursday, May 16 through Sunday, May 19 in downtown Tulsa.