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Safety measures in place for Whisky Fest

PENDLETON, Oregon — The Pendleton Whisky Music fest happens Saturday night. About 20,000 people are expected to be on hand at the Round-Up Stadium for the concert featuring country star and co-host of The Voice, Blake Shelton, as well as global superstar, Pitbull.

Safety is an important concern to organizers and local police. Security measures have been stepped up to include high-tech body scanners and bag checks for those entering the concert grounds.

“If you pack light, which we encourage everyone to do to speed up that process, we’ll have express lanes for no bags,” says Whisky Fest Organizer Andy McAnally, “Those lines should be moving a little bit quicker.”

Pendleton Police Chief Stuart Roberts hopes he’s found a solution to the traffic gridlock at the end of the concert. Parking will not be allowed on Southwest Dorion, which is where most of the shuttle buses will run. Then, right before the concert ends, Southwest Court will close to traffic at 10th Street west.

“Anybody who’s in the convention center or on that west gate place stem, we’re going to push you to the west,” says Roberts. “Anybody who’s in that Albertson’s parking area, you’re going to go to the east.”

Roberts urges people to respect the police barricades and be courteous of other motorists. He’s hoping that traffic will resume its normal pace and direction in about an hour after the concert ends.

In news aside from safety measures and traffic gridlocks, McAnally says food vendors have increased for the sold-out concert this year. Two big food courts will be present behind the stage and the west grandstands.

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