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Memphis Police discuss security plan for busy Beale Street Music Festival

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MEMPHIS, Tenn.-- One of the biggest weekends in Memphis is less than 24 hours away from kicking off.

Tens of thousands of people will descend on the downtown streets and Tom Lee Park for the Beale Street Music Festival.

While everyone is looking forward to having a good time, you also want to be safe.

"I think the number is $80 to $88 million is what’s generated with Memphis in May, so we are super excited for what’s generated for downtown," said Terence Patterson, President of the Downtown Memphis Commission.

With all the extra people downtown enjoying their favorite musicians, Memphis Police are ramping up their efforts.

"We have a huge planning meeting," explained Memphis Police Colonel Gloria Bullock.

At the meeting law enforcement officials decide how to allocate resources.

"We have a safety plan, a traffic plan. We just bring as many officers in as we can and there’s a lot of reserves working," said Bullock.

Memphis Police said their security plan this year doesn’t differ much compared to years past except this go around they have several more cameras patrolling the downtown and riverfront areas.

Shelby County Sheriff’s deputies, Memphis in May security and MPD will have river patrols and aerial patrols if needed.

The Downtown Memphis Commission has also beefed up their Blue Suede Brigade, offering help and security to visitors.

"They’re not just walking but they’re on bikes and Segways," said Patterson.

Don’t expect to see more boots on the ground just around the festival.

"We bring in outside, evening shift officers, two from each precinct and one Alpha shift which is the midnight officers from each precinct to help improve our manpower all over downtown. We don’t just focus on the festival it’s got to be the entire downtown area, especially Beale Street," explained Bullock.

For women MPD says if you can, try not to carry a purse, which can sometimes be easy to snatch.

When using your phone, try using it in a safe and secure area, not out in the open and stay in well-lit areas.

And lock your vehicles!

If you have something valuable don’t make yourself a target and leave it where criminals can see it.

"Our lead in crime downtown is theft from motor vehicles not the violent crimes," said Bullock.