LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - In just two days, the Arkansas State Fair gates will open to the public. As vendors have been setting up this week, new security measures have been put in place. It's all about providing a safe and crime free experience for fair goers.
"We work with the Arkansas State Police, the Pulaski County Sherriff's Office, the Little Rock Police, and then we have our own security department," said Ralph Shoptaw, the fair's general manager.
The beefed up system includes seven surveillance cameras, checkpoints at each gate, and a new bar code system.
"Every vendor, every livestock, every ticket holder--their ticket or their pass will have a barcode, and we have scanners, and when they come through, they'll be scanned," Shoptaw said.
He told THV11 that police have the ability to monitor the entire fairground, and security at the fair doesn't sleep. It runs 24 hours a day. New this year is an additional observation deck where police can monitor things from above the crowd.
No backpacks will be allowed, purses will be searched at each gate, and at 5 p.m., police will start using a metal detector wand on each guest.
"We always say with all the security here on the fairgrounds, this is the safest place in Little Rock to be," Shoptaw said.