Law enforcement urging patrons plan for Stampede traffic
TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Local and state agencies are working together to prepare for the thousand to stampede into the festival grounds.
Kicker Country Stampede goers will enter at Gate-E on the east side of Heartland Motorsports Park and exit at Gate-A, but KHP said to get designated driver plans set now.
Topeka Police said the highest traffic volume they expect will be from 4-5 p.m. and 11 p.m.-midnight all three days.
KHP Trooper Ben Gardner said, “All these vendors, and people like myself, and others are just excited to be able to shake hands, get hugs at times, just smile and laugh. Take in the music, look at that stage up there and see these performers in their niche.”
KHP and other agencies are assisting with Shawnee Co. law enforcement to make sure concert-goers stay safe driving and being picked up.
“Mix in some other things other than the alcohol that they’re probably drinking so getting water and get a designated driver if they need one to know where their gates are at in particular where the ride-share gates are at,” he said.
Patrons will enter Gate E and all exits lead to Gate A on the west side. Those two gates will be where Ubers and Lyfts will be for those who choose to have a DD. Gate E will be closed at 10 p.m. each night though, so Gardner said to plan accordingly.
We received concerns that ride-share drivers were worried intoxicated people would have to cross U.S. Highway 75 to get a ride.
Gardner said that was not the case as cars will be able to pull off the road and into the gravel lot at both locations if there is space for them to, but no one will have to cross the highway to get to their ride.
“Knowing those things in advance, not trying to stumble through it after you’ve had a lot of alcohol is not the best plan of approach before you get what’s to come for the next three days,” he said. “There’s a lot of people excited about this so making a good plan. I’m doing that today and people that are having plans and showing up for the next three days, need to be making their plan and making sure they’re ready for the event.”
Kicker Country Stampede kicks off on Thursday and Gardner said he’s prepared to protect and serve alongside his partner agencies.
“Shawnee Co. is well prepared, they’re well-trained and they’re going to handle this and take care of business and do all the things they need to.”
While also being with the community, safely enjoying the next few days, after years of waiting for the events.
“Just making smart choices and smiling, having a great time. I’m excited, it’s the 25th Kicker Country Stampede.”
Call “Star-47″ for the KHP Dispatch with help driving in or out of the park this weekend. Call 911 for all emergencies in or out.
The map of the grounds is available on the Kicker Country Stampede website.
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