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Jax Beach festival organizers focus on security for future events

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Updated: 5/30/2013 7:40 pm

JACKSONVILLE BEACH, Fla. -- There are new concerns for future events in Jacksonville Beach in the wake of Monday's massive brawl.

Sam Veal is preparing for next month's big music festival at the Seawalk Pavilion. He measured every square inch of the venue for vendor and seating spots.

At the same site on Monday, a massive beach brawl erupted sending chairs and fists flying, one man was even stomped on.

"I just think this was an unfortunate situation that happened to occur here. It could have happened anywhere," said Veal.

Veal is determined not to let Monday's melee deter folks from attending the innagural Community First Seawalk Music Festival, a family-friendly event. It takes place June 15 at the Seawalk Pavilion.

"When you have a focused event, where you have a controlled area, you also have lots of eyes and ears particularly those of both uniform and undercover police," said Veal.

Organizers are now planning on how to prevent a similar violent outburst from happening again.

The annual Springin' the Blues Festival drew tens of thousands of visitors to the Seawalk Pavilion in April.

Organizers and city leaders want you to know that security and police are posted on every corner for these events.

"They looked at our city as in a grid system and made sure to have eyes and ears everywhere and I think that's what we need to do in regards to some of these crowds coming down here over the weekend," said Jacksonville Beach councilman Keith Doherty.

Police Chief Patrick Dooley says that after the beach brawl his department is stepping up security around town. Something you'll notice as soon as this weekend.

"We are going to have a very heavy police presence out here. Very visible."

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