Safety concerns at Freedom Park's annual festival - | WBTV Charlotte

Safety concerns at Freedom Park's annual festival


Nothing says it's fall like the annual Festival in the Park. The event draws thousands to Freedom Park but there are safety concerns this year.

It's the first event at the park since a scary incident this summer -- someone attacked a woman who was jogging. Police still haven't made in any arrests in the case.

Cherise Frazier just moved to Charlotte and was a first timer at Festival in the Park.

"When I got the email and saw that it was totally free and food games carnival and vendors, I was so excited," she said.

So she was glad to see plenty of police.

"Usually, you know, I don't talk to officers, but when I was getting out of my car, one guy was like, 'hey, welcome to Festival in the Park'," she recalled. "And I was like, ok, they're pretty friendly here."

While, Charlotte Mecklenburg Police say the event is historically trouble free but they will have plenty of officers -- both on patrol and those working off duty.

That's good news to Frazier, at the festival with her sister.

"It definitely affirms it for me being a single woman out in the city, being out and about by myself," she said. "It makes me feel more comfortable, a little safer in just a big crowds like this."

But there's no concern for Charlottean Jenni Bivona who says the festival is a yearly tradition with her daughters.

"I never feel unsafe here," she said. "Never, ever feel that we are not safe in this park. It's a great park."

Still she's glad to know officers are there, just in case.

"Knowing that if something --if somebody were to do something out of the ordinary, that would be nice to -- it's nice to see them," Bivona said.

Festival in the Park is free and runs through Sunday.

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