This weekend, thousands of people ready to visit restaurants and bars will start arriving in Charlotte. The Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association Tournament starts next week. Eyewitness News asked police about their plan to keep the city's visitors safe.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department officers said they've been preparing for weeks to help manage the large parties that go on during the athletic tournament.
"We try to collect information on most parties that we have," said Capt. Jeff Estes.
Officers use the information they gather on CIAA events to make security plans. It helps them decide where and when to increase patrols. They've also spent time evaluating the security coverage at large events.
"One of the things we pride ourselves on is making sure that we're in close and constant contact with people hosting and promoting the large events," said Estes.
Some business owners told us they also hire security to protect their customers that week.
"We've already booked our security staff. Every year we have off-duty police officers, so they are at the door and just keep the people who are here safe," said Michael Millican, the manager at Rock Bottom Restaurant in Uptown Charlotte.
Police said they hope the precautions will ensure every visitor makes it home safe.
"CIAA has been a safe event for us in the past and we surly expect so for this year," Estes said.