St. Patrick's Day has overtaken New Year's Eve as the top drinking holiday, according to Sioux Falls Police. And that's why they are already planning to be out in full force this weekend.
With parades, parties and a lot of drinking, St. Patrick’s Day has become a popular holiday for all ages. But the fun and games can come to a screeching halt if drivers decide to get behind the wheel after a day of drinking.
"During the parade, we will start our monitoring. We will have 16 additional officers, that's additional to what would normally be scheduled that night," Lt. Jerome Miller said.
The patrolling won’t stop at the parade though; police will be conducting a saturation patrol Saturday night into Sunday morning.
"Their two main focuses are impaired driving and speed enforcement. So we would encourage everyone to participate, have fun, be safe, get yourself a ride prior to," Miller said.
So, the best advice Miller has for you:
"Find an alternate driver, a place to stay or whatever will suit your schedule," Miller said.
And some local businesses are taking matters into their own hands, trying to help their customers have a fun and safe night. Many are offering shuttles as a way to get you home.
But even with those options out there, Miller says he knows, just as every year has proven, especially with the holiday landing on a weekend, there is a need for saturation patrols like they are planning.
"We do anticipate big crowds and we hope that everyone does it safely but if they choose to, we will be there to deal with it," Miller said.