Resorts, law enforcement preparing for a busy Memorial Day weekend
HAGERMAN, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) —Memorial Day weekend is quickly approaching, and some of the top spots to recreate in the Magic Valley are booking fast, and law enforcement is advising people to be responsible this weekend considering how many people are expected to recreating the waterways for the holiday.
At 1000 Springs Resort in Hagerman, people started making reservations for Memorial Day weekend in January.
“The RV spots fill up fast. The next weekend spots I have for RV’s aren’t going to be until September now,” 1000 Springs co-manager Jenne Coates said.
She also said both cabins at the resort are booked, and roughly 30 of the 45 campsites are filled. Coates said she and her staff are expecting somewhere between 600 to 900 this weekend.
“Oh, I started preparing last month with the schedule. I overstaffed. Now I feel like I am understaffed,” Jenne Coates said.
Her father and fellow co-manager, KG Coates, said the area is popular because of its scenic view and the numerous activities guests can participate in.
“Not only do we have the outside camping sites, but we also have 15 hot tubs, we have a pool, high dive and low dive, a kiddie pool,” KG Coates said.
The resort also overlooks the Snake River. Blue Heart Kayaking co-owner Crystal Kaster said they have 30 to 40 kayaks and paddleboards available for rental, and she expects to be booked solid this weekend.
“We suggest everyone bring lots of water, sunscreen, and hats. Other than that, you should be good to go,” Kaster said.
Sgt. Ken Mencl of the Twin County Sheriff’s Office said, “I would say just here at 1000 Springs, it wouldn’t surprise me to see several hundred boats between kayaks, canoes, motorized vessels, and jet skis.”
Additionally, he said he advises people who choose to recreate on the water to be responsible, as the sheriff’s office had to assist in two life-saving operations on the water this past weekend.
“We have seen some tragic things down here at 1000 Springs before. We have seen people overload their boats and sink their boats. Numerous incidents where people are operating under the influence,” Mencl said.
The sergeant said he wants to remind people that it isn’t illegal to drink on a boat, but it is unlawful to operate a water vessel while intoxicated. But- he also said considering what the temperatures are expected to be this weekend and how many people are anticipated to be out on the waterways, it might be better for people to save the alcohol until they get home.
However, the number one violation officers see on the waterways is people not wearing life jackets or having one aboard their vessels. Idaho had 19 boating fatalities last year.
“Well above our normal average of five. That should tell you how much we are actually getting in the influx of people coming out and having fun on the water, said Jessica Smith of the Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation.
The message this Memorial Day weekend is to be prepared, have a plan, and be patient.
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