Events and the new security world

16 Aug



It’s a new, hyper-secure world for special events. Two articles this week on how new security measures are affecting outdoor events in the Boston area.

The first is kinda sad. A long-standing, 20-year annual celebration that was supposed to be held at the Esplanade in Boston (where the Boston Pops play on July 4th) had to move since they could not afford the new security measures.  The India Day celebration would have had to hire 27 State Police officers and a vendor to do bag checks at the entrance.  They have since moved to another location 25 miles north of Boston to hold the event.

bag check

According to David Procopio, the State Police Spokesperson:  “India Day’s security plan called for 27  troopers, including members of the bomb squad, K-9, and marine units, paid for 7½ hours. Because those are specialized units, troopers assigned to work the shift are paid an overtime rate of $73 an hour, rather than the $40 per hour paid for a detail assignment. Increased costs are passed on to event organizers.”

Yikes.  With a  4-hour minimum – these 27 troopers cost $7884.  If they work one minute over 4 hours, they can charge for 8 hours. You can do the math on that one.  If you read my previous post about the 3, budget-busting P’s – then you saw that police is one of the largest expenses you will have.  These new rules for the Esplanade may force many other events to move.

I talked to my pal, who runs the logistics for an event happening at the Esplanade in October, and she said regarding the new security measures: “Yes, definitely an increase. But for us, who use alot of police anyway the jump isn’t as obscene. I probably have to add another 6 troopers, and bomb dogs. Not sure of cost of dogs.. But the added police probably only about 3-4K more than I already pay.”

The second article I read in the Boston Globe is about how fans that want to attend any Patriots events at Gillette Stadium will have some new restrictions with what they can and cannot bring in.  “The only bags allowed in the stadium must be clear and must not exceed 12 inches by 12 inches by 6 inches, said Stacey James, Patriots spokesman. Women’s clutches do not have to be clear, but they must not be larger than 7 inches by 4 inches by 2 inches. One-gallon clear freezer bags are also allowed, as are cameras and binoculars, but not their cases. Blankets, jackets, and coats are subject to searches, James said.”

Here is a graphic on the new policy at Gillette Stadium.


Those two Boston Marathon bomber-JackHoles have really affected the non-profits that need these outdoor events to raise money for their missions.  I think that the lone, surviving bomber-brother should have to do clean-up on the Esplanade after every event as part of his punishment.  Give him a rake, a broom, some gloves and lots of garbage bags – oh, and a bright orange shirt that says “JackHole” on it.


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