Downtown Sacramento Readying For March Madness, St. Patrick’s Day Collision

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — While college basketball teams from around the country prepare to play in the NCAA tournament in Sacramento, police and restaurant owners are readying for the large crowds.

“Anything you can do to bring more people in town is important,” said Henry de Vere White, the owner of de Vere’s Irish Pub.

He and others are preparing for large crowds spilling out of Golden One Center on Friday and Sunday. They’re also preparing for massive St. Patrick’s Day block parties.

“Maybe they leave work a little earlier, maybe they stay a little longer,” said de Vere White.

On Friday, de Vere’s opens at 9 a.m. Malt and Mash, another pub near Golden One Center opens their block party at 11a.m.

General Manager Matt Evans says they’ve hired 10 to 15 extra security personnel for the event. He says they’re expecting 7,000 to 10,000 people to cycle through during the entire day.

There will be food, booze and basketball. Watching it all, the Sacramento Police.

“[We] strategically place our resources where they’ll be the most effective,” said Sgt. Bryce Heinlein with the Sacramento Police Department.

Heinlein says the department has a plan in place for large crowds similar to a typical NBA game night.

“Staffing is something people are going to see. A lot of officers in and around our downtown area,” said Heinlein.

Except this time, there will be four games Friday and two on Sunday, not to mention the St. Patrick’s Day festivities on Friday as well.

“ We’re going to have a big influx of people into the city through the whole weekend,” said Heinlein.

Heinlein says police will put their recently released Real Time Crime Center to work.

Inside the operation center, officers and civilian staff monitor computers and cameras.
They can see patrol officers on a grid map. They can track and route them through GPS in real time.

“As they see things occur, they can relay things to officers in a specific area,” said Heinlein.

“We have a good plan,” continued Heinlein, “we’re just hoping everyone enjoys themselves and stays safe.”

More from Drew Bollea
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