Police promise extra security as thousands attend Cincinnati light festival

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Heavy foot traffic is expected to pass through Cincinnati for an up-close look at one of the largest light, art and projection mapping events in the nation.

BLINK is a four-day festival that runs through several downtown streets this weekend. Half a million people are expected to visit the 20-block art display.

Visitors won't only notice the glowing murals on dozens of the buildings. They'll also a lot of police officers to keep the crowds safe.

"You're going to see them because they are going to be on nearly every block. If not every intersection and block there will be a lot out," said Cpt. Michael Neville with the Cincinnati Police.

Police are not saying how many extra officers will be on patrol but they will be visible from the Banks to Findlay Market. Captain Neville says they have been reviewing security plans for several months.

"I think our event group and the city itself have done a phenomenal job breaking it down and putting people in the right places," Neville said.

Large city attractions can become targets for terrorism but police say they are prepared for anything.

"That's one reason why you have officers visible. We understand what goes on around the country. We do monitor that and see what we can do to make people feel better because of those events," said Cpt. Neville.

Cpt. Neville says the extra security has been hired and paid for by the organizers of Blink Cincinnati.

While safety concerns may be on the back of some people's minds, they are not going to let it ruin the show.

"I think you just have to live your life and assume the people around you are good and If we stop doing things then they win so I have no concerns," said Gwen Triplett who is visiting Blink Cincinnati from Northern Kentucky. "I'm just really excited. I think It's going to be pretty incredible."

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