If you want to see crazy in action, just catch Oakdale before and during the rodeo weekend, and while it’s a wild good time for most, for law enforcement and certain city agencies, it spells overtime, a black out on vacation time, and most certainly all hands on deck.
To that end, it will be a maximum enforcement period for law enforcement. California Highway Patrol will be participating in the “Avoid the 12” to impact drunk driving over the rodeo weekend, Friday through Sunday, April 8-10, and Oakdale Police will be conducting a sobriety checkpoint Saturday night at an undisclosed location so the message is loud and clear: Don’t drink and drive or else you’re going to get caught.
In addition, the Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) task force will be in Oakdale to ensure that any place with a liquor license is adhering to the laws pertaining to their license.
“There’s a lot of work for everyone,” Admin Sgt. Kerri Redd said of the prep work involved. “The details are mind-boggling.”
So while most people are simply gearing up for a good time, the work behind-the-scenes is all-encompassing.
“We’ve been developing emergency plans and there’s been a lot of collaboration between all agencies,” Redd said.
Sacramento Sheriff’s Department will be volunteering three of their mounted patrol to assist reserve officer and mounted patrol Joe Cruz and his horse Lobo, with crowd control at the rodeo parade, Saturday, April 9 and Modesto Police will be sending one mounted officer for Sunday at the rodeo grounds.
“It was real nice of Sacramento Sheriff’s Office to help do this for us rodeo weekend,” Cruz said. “We’re happy to have them help us out.”
Redd said they’re also keeping an eye on the weather as historically, hot weather encourages more drinking, which in turn encourages hot tempers.
“We want nice weather so everyone has a good time but no super hot temperatures and no rain,” Redd said. “Last year, the rodeo was washed out with rain on Sunday and that’s not good for anyone.”
As a reminder, rodeo weekend draws many out-of-town visitors, which means an increase in traffic so remember to be a safe, defensive driver, Redd said.