Houston - Final preparations are underway for the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, where more than 2 million people are expected to attend one of the city’s most popular events.
"There’s an uptick in violent crime in our city, just as there is around the country,’ said Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo. "That means we have to be double vigilant this year."
In order to enter rodeo grounds, all guests will be required to walk through metal detectors. In addition, all bags will be searched. We’re told more than 1,000 law enforcement members will be scattered across rodeo grounds every day.
"We have a lot of people walking around, undercover," said Captain J.D. Glessman from the Harris County Sheriff’s Office. "There are about 600 cameras around the park. [Guests] might not see that there’s extra security, but believe me, it’s here."
Across Houston, the number of homicides is up almost 30 percent compared to 2021.
"I take the numbers and what’s happening in the city very seriously," said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner. "But, I also want to say to people, you can still go about your business in this city. For 99.9 percent of the people, they’re going to be okay [at the rodeo. So, I’m encouraging people to go."
"The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo is a tier 2 event," said Houston Rodeo President Chris Boleman. "Meaning, it’s comparable to the Super Bowl. From the city, the county, state, and the feds. We provide the safest environment we can."
Houston Rodeo gates will be opening for the first time since the pandemic. More than 150,000 people are expected at the event on a given day.
"Anytime you have a crowd, like we have at the rodeo, we’re always concerned [about safety’," said Glessman. "We do take measures to lessen that concern."
"There shouldn’t be a dark spot anywhere," said Boleman. "In terms of our parking lots, we’re very well lit. We have helicopters flying over. We put in a lot of time and effort to ensure this is a safe event."
Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™ security procedures include, but are not limited to, performing body wand and bag checks at several NRG Park entrance gates, and random bag checks at all NRG Stadium gates.
Patrons should allow additional time to enter the grounds, as these security measures may be in place as they arrive at the event.
The Houston Rodeo provided the below safety and security information.
All patrons are subject to wand and bag check screening at entrance gates.
Prohibited items include, but are not limited to:
- Air horns
- Banners bearing advertisements
- Banners judged to be in poor taste or offensive
- Beach balls
- Flag poles
- Frisbee® and other sports discs
- Laser pointers
- Professional camera equipment (photography lenses over 3 inches in length)
- Selfie sticks
Audio recording is not allowed in NRG Stadium. And video recording is not allowed in the stadium during RODEOHOUSTON