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'No safer place': Lifest Oshkosh attendees confident about security after July 4 parade shooting

Posted at 7:04 PM, Jul 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-07 20:04:29-04

OSHKOSH, Wis. (NBC 26) — For roughly 20 years, Stephanie Huebner has ventured out to Lifest to see and hear some of her favorite Christian bands.

"Being surrounded with just a positive flow of energy, it feels great," the Fond du Lac resident said.

But this year, the annual music festival in Oshkosh begins just days after yet another American tragedy.

"Honestly, I think there's gonna be hesitation in people that show up this year because of the continual mass shootings and bad things that are going on," Huebner said.

She isn't one of those people. Continuing her tradition was an obvious choice.

"I think that there's no safer place to be than to be under the umbrella of God with other believers," Huebner said. "I think that this is the safest place, hence no fear."

Organizers expect nearly 30,000 attendees per day at Lifest, and security will be keeping a close eye out.

"We've got a professional security company at our gates now," Festival Director John Dougherty said. "People are going to notice barricades in certain areas to keep cars out of high traffic areas."

Two of the crowd's youngest concert-goers have indeed noticed those measures. Lucas and James Hafermann are confident the event will go smoothly.

"I've seen a couple of golf carts going around for medical and I feel pretty safe here," James said.

Organizers say around 12,000 people are camping out on the grounds, many using the sound of music as an outlet.

"With all the negative, horrible things that are going on, this is where you want to be," Huebner said.