Here are IFPD’s safety tips as 4th of July festivities get underway
The following is a news release from the Idaho Falls Police Department.
IDAHO FALLS – With the annual Independence Day festivities getting underway, the Idaho Falls Police Department and partner agencies are sharing traffic closures, information, and safety tips to help the public to be safe and prepared for the annual 4th of July events that take place in Idaho Falls.
Liberty on Parade hosted by the Greater Idaho Falls Chamber of Commerce, Riverbend’s Riverfest and the Melaleuca Freedom Celebration draw thousands upon thousands of people each year to Idaho Falls. Anyone attending these events, as well as residents of Idaho Falls and the surrounding areas, are encouraged to plan ahead for the impacts of these events to ensure a safe and enjoyable Independence Day.
Call 9-1-1 in the event of an emergency. To contact public safety for non-emergent issues call (208) 529-1200. If, due to congestion around the events, you are not able to successfully place/receive phone calls or text messages, go to the IFPD post or flag down one of the Idaho Falls Police Officers or Idaho Falls Fire & EMS personnel roving through the events.
Report any criminal activity. IFPD officers will be patrolling throughout the events. Every Idaho Falls Police Department officer will be working on the 4th of July. We thank the public for their patience as officers address calls for service as quickly as possible, as well as other safety and criminal concerns throughout the day.
LIBERTY ON PARADE
The annual 4th of July parade, Liberty on Parade hosted by the Greater Idaho Falls Chamber of Commerce, begins at 9 a.m. on Monday, July 4th. The parade route begins near Idaho Falls High School at the intersection of 4th Street and South Holmes Avenue, travels West on 4th Street, turns South on South Boulevard, and concludes at Tautphaus Park near the intersection of South Boulevard and Rogers Street.
Idaho Falls Police Officers will be roving along the parade route and in the surrounding area on bike and on foot. A manned post of IFPD Officers will be located at 10th Street and South Boulevard near Common Cents. Look for the blue Idaho Falls Police canopy.
Pedestrian foot traffic and people lining the parade route begins hours before the start of the parade. Residents and anyone traveling within at least a mile of the parade route should expect to encounter congested traffic, crowds, and pedestrians. Motorists are asked to avoid the area if they are not attending the parade and to otherwise use caution in the area.
Parking along the parade route is not permitted after 5 a.m. on July 4th until after the conclusion of the parade. Anyone who leaves a vehicle parked along the parade route after 5 a.m. for any length of time risks being cited and/or having the vehicle towed.
The following road closures related to the parade will be in effect at the indicated times on July 4th until the conclusion of the parade.
John Adams Parkway, including the branches that connect to 4th Street and 5th Street, from Tiger Ave to S Holmes Ave.
South Boulevard from N Water Ave to W Sunnyside Road.
9 a.m. and later
The intersection of South Holmes Ave and 4th Street will close at the start of the parade.
South Holmes Ave will reopen after the parade has passed.
The intersection of South Holmes and East 17th Street will close when the parade reaches
10th street and will remain closed until the parade has passed.
RIVERFEST & FREEDOM CELEBRATION
The annual Riverfest and Melaleuca Freedom Celebration events take place at Snake River Landing. For full details from the event organizers regarding the schedule of events, visit their respective websites. Crowds begin gathering at Snake River Landing in the early afternoon and continue to grow throughout the evening. In 2021, event organizers estimated that over 200,000 people gathered in and around Snake River Landing to watch the fireworks display.
Due to the large number of people in the area, cell phone service at Snake River Landing becomes unreliable in the early to late evening and continues until after the majority of attendees have dispersed after the fireworks. Attendees should plan to be unable to send text messages or place phone calls during this time period. It is wise to discuss safety plans with children and adults in your group, including child safety, where you will meet if you are separated, and where to seek emergency assistance at the event if you cannot place a call to 911.
Idaho Falls Police Officers will be roving through Snake River Landing on bike and on foot throughout the event. A manned post of IFPD Officers will be located at the Northeast corner of Snake River Parkway and Event Center Drive after the conclusion of the parade. Look for the blue Idaho Falls Police canopy.
South Tourist Park and Ryder Park serve as command posts for emergency personnel from the
Idaho Falls Police Department, Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office, and the Idaho Falls Fire Department. In order for emergency vehicles to respond quickly in the event of an emergency, South Tourist Park and Ryder Park will be closed to all public vehicles, boats & campers/RVs beginning July 3rd at noon. South Tourist Park and the adjacent River Walk/Greenbelt will remain open for foot/bicycle traffic. The parks will reopen to vehicles boats and camping at noon on July 5th.
As a reminder to attendees, Snake River Landing is private property and the venue is being made available for the public. Attendees are encouraged to be respectful of private property, and to be cooperative with all Snake River Landing staff, private security and City of Idaho Falls staff working to ensure an enjoyable and safe celebration. Anyone found not complying with rules or laws may be asked to leave. For the safety of all attendees and to limit potential disruption to the fireworks display, the following rules are in effect during the event:
NO PERSONAL FIREWORKS: Due to the location of the fireworks launch site and Riverfest, the highly congested and grassy areas around Snake River Landing, and for the safety of persons attending the event, the Fire Marshal has restricted any and all personal fireworks, including sparklers, from Lochsa Drive, south to Sunnyside Drive, and from the Capital Avenue River Walk west to the Porter Canal.
NO DRONES: Personally owned/operated drones will not be allowed at Snake River Landing. It is unsafe to operate drones above crowds of people, and airspace around the events need to be clear for emergency operations. In addition, there are helicopters that fly in the area regularly throughout the event and personal drones may impact the ability for those helicopters to operate safely.
NO ALCOHOL: Event organizers and property owners have prohibited all alcohol at Snake River Landing.
NO ATV’s: No private ATVs or motorized vehicles will be permitted at Snake River Landing. Motorized vehicles are only allowed in open roads or parking lots and must stay off trails and sidewalks.
WATER SAFETY: People are asked to stay out of the river, canals and water features in and around Snake River Landing, including the Snake River. The waterways may look refreshing on a hot day, but there are many hidden dangers and water levels are high and fast. Water features at Snake River Landing may contain additives that are unsafe for people and pets.
EMERGENCY TRAFFIC: Keep emergency vehicle lanes open to allow public safety personnel to respond quickly and safely. When needed, please make safe efforts to make space for public safety personnel to get through quickly, whether on foot, bike, or in a vehicle.
Those attending the Melaleuca Freedom Celebration should plan to arrive early and should not expect to access Snake River Landing at the last minute. Attendees should review the Parking & Exiting Map provided by event organizers for recommended parking areas based on your destination following the fireworks.
Any unmarked areas are “No Parking”. Please only park in the indicated spaces or lots to allow for emergency vehicle access throughout the event area. There is no on-street parking allowed anywhere on Snake River Pkwy, Pioneer Road, Event Center Drive, or Sunnyside between I-15 and Yellowstone Hwy, and Yellowstone Hwy between Sunnyside and Pancheri at any time on the 4th of July. Vehicles parked in these areas risk towing or citation.
Complex traffic plans have been put in place through partnerships with Snake River Landing and event organizers, the Idaho Transportation Department, Idaho State Police, Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office, City of Idaho Falls, and the Idaho Falls Police Department.
Traffic plans have been created to maximize safety and efficiency as people are exiting the Snake River Landing area following the fireworks. However, given the hundreds of thousands of attendees at this event, even the most efficient traffic exit plans will take time. Routes in and around Idaho Falls will be restricted, and certain parking lots will allow for faster exits to certain locations. Information about parking lot designations is available at www.freedomcelebration.com.
Due to the greatly increased number of people in the city, remember to remain patient in slowmoving traffic. Drivers should slow down, focus on driving, avoid distractions, watch for pedestrians, and bicyclists, obey all traffic laws, special holiday parking and traffic restrictions. Drivers should not attempt to go around cones or barricaded areas and should obey directions from law enforcement and designated traffic officials.
The road closures listed below will go into effect at the time shown and will reopen when traffic exiting the Melaleuca Freedom Celebration has sufficiently cleared.
Milligan Road South of 901 Pier View Drive is currently closed and will remain closed until after July 4th.
July 3rd at 10 a.m.
Snake River Parkway from Whitewater Drive to midway between Event Center Drive and Sunnyside Road.
Event Center Drive
Lochsa River Drive from Snake River Parkway to White Sand Creek Way
July 4th at 6 a.m.
Full road closures:
Snake River Pkwy North of Sunnyside to Pier View Drive
Snake River Pkwy between Pioneer Rd and Utah Ave
July 4th at 8 p.m.
Sunnyside from Snake River Pkwy to Pioneer Rd.
July 4th at 9 p.m.
Interstate 15 at Sunnyside Rd. (Exit 116) off-ramp closures for northbound and southbound
exits (on-ramps will be open).
Pioneer Rd. from Pioneer Drive to Event Center Drive
Pancheri Dr. & Utah Ave.
The North segment exiting the Utah Ave. roundabout
Southfork Blvd between Sunnyside and Pioneer Drive
Pioneer Drive & Sunnyside
Pioneer Road & Sunnyside
S. Yellowstone Hwy (26) at 19th Street
Sunnyside and Yellowstone
19th and Rollandet Ave
21st and Rollandet Ave
Pancheri Dr., East of Skyline Dr.
W. Sunnyside Rd., near the I-15 interchange
Gallatin & 25th
Utah Ave & Pioneer Rd
W. Broadway Street & Yellowstone Ave (Highway 26)
Pancheri Dr & S. Yellowstone Hwy (Highway 26)
Leslie Ave & 21st St
Leslie Ave & 25th St
Rollandet Ave & 17th St.
Rollandet Ave & 21st St.
Softball & Rollandet
Riverwalk & Pancheri
Riverwalk & Bridgeport
Pancheri Dr & Capital Ave
W. Sunnyside Rd & S. Yellowstone Hwy (Highway 91 westbound)
W. Sunnyside Rd at Rollandet
W. Broadway Street & Memorial Drive
W. Sunnyside & McNeil Drive
W. Sunnyside on the Eastside of Basic American Foods (1050 W Sunnyside Road)
W. Sunnyside west of S Koester Road at the substation
Pedestrians and bicyclists leaving Snake River Landing via Sunnyside will be able to use the sidewalk on the north side of Sunnyside Road. Pedestrians and bicyclists are asked to not cross Sunnyside in any location other than designated crossing areas indicated by event signage. Visibility is low and pedestrian safety is a significant concern. Besides causing delays to traffic flow exiting the event, there are vehicle versus pedestrian near misses each year due to pedestrians crossing traffic in an unsafe manner.