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Security preparing to keep MontanaFair safe

Fair to run through next week
Posted at 5:39 PM, Aug 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-09 19:48:53-04

BILLINGS — Montana Fair isn't just live music, rodeos and Supercross.

Tens of thousands come to the MetraPark Fairgrounds for the Montana Fair every summer.

"We've been talking about it and been preparing for any type of incident, whether it be some sort of disturbance on the grounds, on up to a possible active shooter. You know, we've been training for stuff like this basically since Columbine, and most agencies around the country have been training... have been for some type of a similar situation," said Yellowstone County Sheriff Mike Linder.

This year's crackdown is just as aggressive as in any other year. The protection of everyone at the fair is important to ensure safety and allow everyone to have a good time, fair officials said.

"We do have the magnetometers. We have the same settings as we do in airports. The belt buckles go off, the keys go off, any metal goes off. So if there's a pocket knife of any sort it goes off and we're alerted," the director of Starplex Security Austin Schnizler. "And we have the magnetometers with the capabilities of letting us know it lights up exactly where on their body they have something concealed that's not supposed to get in."

Linder said, "If you're planning on coming to the fair, be comfortable about doing so. We'll have a great team down here- well-prepared, well-equipped and well-trained if there are any kind of issues, we'll be able to deal with them."

For concert goers who aren’t sure what they can bring inside, here is a list of what's prohibited on MetraPark Grounds and its facilities:

Firearms, knives and all weapons are not allowed.

Selfie sticks, which can be considered a weapon.

Smoking is prohibited in all of MetraPark’s facilities. The First Interstate Arena provides a designated outdoor smoking area.