By Mark Barnes
Organizers, vendors, volunteers, police, and business owners are letting out a collective “whew” this week as another Kuna Days is in the rear view mirror. People had a good time. Incidents were low. And, now it’s time to reflect.
According to the Ada County Sheriff’s Office, there were no major problems to report during Kuna Days. They said Friday was slower than anticipated with 12 officers on duty from the Kuna Police, Ada County Sheriff’s Office and the Juvenile enforcement teams.
Saturday was more typical as far as traffic and numbers of people. There was only one felony arrest associated with the event (see article on page 2). There were two officers assigned to the Cowgirls parking lot where the street dance was located. An additional eight uniformed and non-uniformed officers were roving between events.
The main issue, law enforcement says, was traffic control on Main Street. With the street not closed to vehicles this year and with the two major event locations at the ends of Main Street, keeping pedestrians safe was an issue. Thankfully, a volunteer crossing guard offered her time creating a safe crossing across Main Street at Avenue A.
“We really had to focus on traffic – it was quite a scramble for a while,” Kuna Police Chief Justin Dusseau. “A lot of people (pedestrians) didn’t seem like they were paying attention to traffic.”
“I bet I’ve worked 10 different Kuna Days over the years, and this one was very smooth,” Dusseau said. “Friday was pretty slow. Saturday was pretty typical. The fireworks went well. Lots of people showed up and seemed to have a lot of fun. The main issue we had was with foot traffic on Main Street. ”
If Main Street remains open next year, police say they will likely get more people involved as crossing guards.
Police were able to reunite six children who lost their parents in the large crowds. Additionally, there were four DUI arrest between Saturday night and Sunday morning.
The Ada County Sheriff’s Office said that one change that was really beneficial this year was that Kuna Fire dedicated two paramedics to the event, which means they were immediately available if there was a medical issue. A few children that fell and got scrapes, were able to get care right away. There were two or three people who were very intoxicated and the paramedics were able to respond to those calls quickly.
According to the Kuna Fire Department there were just three responses for medical assistance on Friday with only one requiring a transport to the hospital. Saturday saw the same number of medical assistance needs and one walk-in to the aid station. Kuna Fire Chief Stephen Rinaldi attributes the low paramedic need to the milder temperatures. With everyone staying hydrated it helped to prevent heat related injuries he said.