Earth Day festivities at Shelby Farms brought in a lot of people and a shortage of close parking. With hundreds of people parking nearly a mile away, leaving their cars unattended, there was a potential for break-ins.
"Everybody's everywhere but the thing about it is you got the sheriff's department, you've got the rangers for the park; they're all here. They got a lot of policemen out here so to me it's very safe," says park visitor Quinn Rucker.
The increased security provided by the Shelby County Sheriff's Office on Saturday – from deputies in Rangers to security towers – provided park visitors with a sense of safety.
"It was busy but it was really organized. Felt really safe, and there were no problems at all. A lot of police presence, security; felt really safe," says park visitor Jason Reed.
Visitor Nicole Velez had to park a mile away from the festival on Saturday, but says, "I do feel that everything's going to be safe. There's a great officer presence around."
Stepped-up security kept park visitors focused on the fun instead of the fear of a car break-in, but they say the amount of security on Saturday is the kind of security needed daily at Shelby Farms.
"If they would do that to get more to secure people's vehicles and property, trust me, a lot more people would come out here a lot," says Rucker, "Just to show ‘We do care about the city, we do care about your belongings' because I know things can get really expensive trying to replace stuff like that."
The Shelby County Sheriff's Office says they have not noticed a recent increase of break-ins. They say they have increased patrol efforts in the area and that seems to be helping to curb break-ins.
They add they are continually having problems with people leaving valuables in plain sight which is a target for break-ins.