Bloomsday Security: Changes Will Be Made In Wake Of Boston Attac - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Bloomsday Security: Changes Will Be Made In Wake Of Boston Attack

SPOKANE, Wash – Nearly 50,000 people will cross the finish line in the 37th annual Lilac Bloomsday Run on Sunday, May 5th – and this year more than ever, in the wake of the attack in Boston, security issues are taking center stage.

"We're really heartbroken to see that happen at an event that's all about health and fitness," Bloomsday Founder & Race Director Don Kardong told KHQ.  "Anytime there's an incident we like to review our procedures to make sure we're doing everything we can and if we need to we'll make changes."

Kardong has a good partner; head of race security Al Odenthal graduated from the FBI National Academy and spent 26 with Spokane Police before retiring as Assistant Chief.  He's been helping with security for Bloomsday for nearly two decades.

"We've learned a lot in our 36 years [of running Bloomsday], and it's a changing world," Odenthal told KHQ.

With questions still lingering as to why Boston was attacked, he has to think about whether Spokane could be – and how just a few years ago, it almost was.

"The FBI was a big help in the MLK Day explosive device and getting things cranked up before Bloomsday of that year," he added.

Odenthal is working with Spokane Police – and federal partners – to make sure security plans are appropriate.  The FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force is keeping watch over any threats or possible risks, Homeland Security and the TSA will be involved at the airport as thousand of people – and their luggage – fly into Spokane, and the ATF will be involved in helping protect against explosives.  He says there will be changes to the race this year, although you may never see them.

"We have incorporated the prospect of a few security changes that are pretty much going to be invisible to participants and spectators," Odenthal said.

In years past, changes have already been made to the course – including a section of the race where an ambulance couldn't make it in.  Now, every year a medical helicopter is stationed there in case people need to be flown out of the area for emergency care.

Odenthal told KHQ his two little grandkids will be at Bloomsday, and he doesn't have any reservations about their safety, which says a lot about yours.

Still, he asks that anyone near the event on May 5th keep a particularly watchful eye.

"When we put 55, 60 thousand people together in one place, that becomes a target for someone who wants to do a lot of damage," he added.  "So if it doesn't belong there, if it calls your attention, if you see something, say something."

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • PHOTOS: Westbound I-90 at Ellensburg back open after 16 vehicle crash

    PHOTOS: Westbound I-90 at Ellensburg back open after 16 vehicle crash

    Saturday, February 17 2018 5:23 PM EST2018-02-17 22:23:29 GMT

    CLE ELUM, Wash. - UPDATE: Washington State Department of Transportation says I-90 at Ellensburg is back open following a major crash Saturday morning. Westbound lanes were closed for several hours Saturday. Washington State Patrol urges drivers to use caution as conditions can change quickly.

    >>

    CLE ELUM, Wash. - UPDATE: Washington State Department of Transportation says I-90 at Ellensburg is back open following a major crash Saturday morning. Westbound lanes were closed for several hours Saturday. Washington State Patrol urges drivers to use caution as conditions can change quickly.

    >>
  • Family left high and dry after Trader Tots consignment store's surprise closure

    Family left high and dry after Trader Tots consignment store's surprise closure

    Saturday, February 17 2018 1:17 AM EST2018-02-17 06:17:14 GMT

    POST FALLS, Idaho - Billie Swanson has her hands full. Taking care of two boys could be a full-time job. “Kids grow in and out of stuff so quickly and it's a nice place to go and to have that option and some extra money in our pockets,” Swanson said. Swanson is taking about Trader Tots Consignment Store in Post Falls. It’s a place she’s gone to in the past to sell her kids old clothes and buy new ones. That is, until recently. “They 

    >>

    POST FALLS, Idaho - Billie Swanson has her hands full. Taking care of two boys could be a full-time job. “Kids grow in and out of stuff so quickly and it's a nice place to go and to have that option and some extra money in our pockets,” Swanson said. Swanson is taking about Trader Tots Consignment Store in Post Falls. It’s a place she’s gone to in the past to sell her kids old clothes and buy new ones. That is, until recently. “They 

    >>
  • North Idaho man tries to make off with 40 ft long poles

    North Idaho man tries to make off with 40 ft long poles

    Saturday, February 17 2018 12:11 AM EST2018-02-17 05:11:05 GMT
    Kootenai County Sheriff's OfficeKootenai County Sheriff's Office

    KOOTENAI COUNTY, Idaho. - The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office arrested 47-year-old Brett K. Anderson of Post Falls, ID Thursday after he was reported to have been hitting on-coming cars with a large poles sticking out of his own vehicle in the area of N. Meyer Rd. and Hayden Ave. When deputies arrived on scene, they discovered Anderson had stolen stole several 30-40’ long pieces of irrigation pipe from a nearby farm field and was 

    >>

    KOOTENAI COUNTY, Idaho. - The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office arrested 47-year-old Brett K. Anderson of Post Falls, ID Thursday after he was reported to have been hitting on-coming cars with a large poles sticking out of his own vehicle in the area of N. Meyer Rd. and Hayden Ave. When deputies arrived on scene, they discovered Anderson had stolen stole several 30-40’ long pieces of irrigation pipe from a nearby farm field and was 

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • Deputies: Florida woman ‘just out of rehab' had open 12-pack of beer, child in car

    Deputies: Florida woman ‘just out of rehab' had open 12-pack of beer, child in car

    Saturday, February 17 2018 8:27 PM EST2018-02-18 01:27:10 GMT

     WELLINGTON, Fla. - A Florida woman was arrested Thursday after deputies said she drove intoxicated with a child sitting above an open case of beer tucked in the back seat. The Palm Beach Post reports that a deputy pulled over 30-year-old Stephanie Roque of Miami about 11 a.m. after she made a complete stop in her SUV in the center of a lane. The deputy said that Roque’s drivers license was suspended, and noticed she had a strong smell of alcohol coming from her car.

    >>

     WELLINGTON, Fla. - A Florida woman was arrested Thursday after deputies said she drove intoxicated with a child sitting above an open case of beer tucked in the back seat. The Palm Beach Post reports that a deputy pulled over 30-year-old Stephanie Roque of Miami about 11 a.m. after she made a complete stop in her SUV in the center of a lane. The deputy said that Roque’s drivers license was suspended, and noticed she had a strong smell of alcohol coming from her car.

    >>
  • FBI investigating after tree house filled with child porn found in Snoqualmie National Forest

    FBI investigating after tree house filled with child porn found in Snoqualmie National Forest

    Saturday, February 17 2018 7:40 PM EST2018-02-18 00:40:47 GMT
    Snoqualmie National ForestSnoqualmie National Forest

    SNOQUALMIE NATIONAL FOREST, Wash. - A Mill Creek man is under investigation by the FBI after child pornography was found inside a tree house in the Snoqualmie National Forest. According to court documents obtained by KIRO 7, the unauthorized tree house is located off the middle fork of the Snoqualmie River, and was reported by an employee of the Department of Natural Resources. A DNR worker took several photographs off the child porn-covered walls to show

    >>

    SNOQUALMIE NATIONAL FOREST, Wash. - A Mill Creek man is under investigation by the FBI after child pornography was found inside a tree house in the Snoqualmie National Forest. According to court documents obtained by KIRO 7, the unauthorized tree house is located off the middle fork of the Snoqualmie River, and was reported by an employee of the Department of Natural Resources. A DNR worker took several photographs off the child porn-covered walls to show

    >>
  • Michigan woman's 'thoughts and prayers' check goes viral on Facebook

    Michigan woman's 'thoughts and prayers' check goes viral on Facebook

    Saturday, February 17 2018 7:30 PM EST2018-02-18 00:30:54 GMT

    KHQ.com - A Michigan woman is going viral on Facebook for her response to a Florida school shooting that left 17 people dead. Fern Malila posted a picture Thursday of a check and a letter to Michigan Rep. Jack Bergman. In the fields to write in dollar amounts, Malila wrote in, "Thoughts and prayers."

    >>

    KHQ.com - A Michigan woman is going viral on Facebook for her response to a Florida school shooting that left 17 people dead. Fern Malila posted a picture Thursday of a check and a letter to Michigan Rep. Jack Bergman. In the fields to write in dollar amounts, Malila wrote in, "Thoughts and prayers."

    >>