Safety and Security Boot Camp

2023 Safety and Security Boot Camp

A Boot Camp for all IAFE members that include six virtual learning opportunities and an in-person, field trip to the South Carolina State Fair. Designed for all fair sizes, the IAFE Safety and Security Boot Camp is a workshop series to assist member fairs with their safety and security programs. The curriculum has been developed by the IAFE Safety and Security committee, which is comprised of individuals, working in the industry, which have FBI, highway patrol, local police and Sheriff, and private security company backgrounds.

2023 Safety and Security Boot Camp



February 16 – September 21, 2023

See below for specific date(s) All sessions are 2 hours



$399* (per site)

*Optional in-person field trip additional $100 (per person)


All courses presented virtually. Optional, In-person field trip, South Carolina State Fair, Columbia, South Carolina


Presented by the IAFE Safety and Security Committee

The following workshops will be presented live utilizing Zoom.

Risk Management Assessment (Part One)

This course will define security from a special event perspective and review the components of an effective risk management assessment including risk, management policies and how to engage your team and change the culture. How to develop relationships, in advance, with stakeholders.

Presented by:  Cliff Hedges- Eastern States Exposition and Rebecca Desmond, California Fairs Services Authority (February 16, 2023, 2:00pm CDT) 2 Hours

Risk Management Assessment (Part Two)

The discussion continues… panelists will provide a brief refresher from part one, and move quickly into reviewing access control, emergency response, risk management, funding, and buy-in. The discussion will also highlight working with concert promoters and risk assessment for entertainment acts and conducting daily risk assessments(s) for your entertainment venues. (Seating, command post location and trained crowd managers)

Presented by: Cliff Hedges – Eastern States Exposition and Rebecca Desmond, California Fairs Services Authority (March 16, 2023, 2:00pm CST) 2 Hours

De-escalation-What is it and what do I need to know?

This course will define the difference between soft and hard activism and methods of de-escalation. What is an active bystander? How can they assist? And how can your opening and closing procedures assist with your security and de-escalation plan? Presenter will identify how your grounds layout could enhance or hinder your de-escalation plan.

 Presented by: Jeff Cotner, State Fair of Texas (April 27, 2023, 2:00pm CDT) 2 Hours

Crowd Management Best Practices and Crowd Psychology What should you have in your toolkit?

This course will review the best practices for crowd management. Events and venues have the responsibility to keep their attendees safe. Current events and media headlines have highlighted the important of having trained crowd managers, sufficient entrances/exits for entertainment venues, at entrances, special events and even at your concession stands.

Presented by: Jeff Cotner, State Fair of Texas (May 25, 2022, 2:00pm CDT) 2 Hours

Creating & Utilizing Effective Training Programs

A course that will provide attendees with tools to organize and conduct live training. Review tools that can assist your organization in their response (App utilization), pre meetings with volunteers and the security team. What should be communicated to whom at the thirty- foot view versus the 10,000-foot view?

Presented by Lt. David Golden, Kansas State Fair (June 22, 2023, 2:00pm CDT) 2 Hours

Safety and Security Communications

How do we communicate we are a safe event without saying “we are a safe event.”  Are your words matching your actions? Is your team prepared for incident communications? (Preparedness and proactive) Keeping your finger on the pulse – what role do you play? This course addresses How to work with and communicate with your marketing team and PIO’s. Command Centers and communication with your safety & security partners, community and stakeholders. In addition, this course will review emergency response, mitigation, and recovery. Your toolbox may include how to deal with crisis situations but what next? How to you recover and re-open?

Presented by:  Ray Allison, CFE – Indiana State Fair (September 21, 2023, 2:00pm CDT) 2 Hours

October 16, 2023, IAFE Safety and Security Road-Trip to the South Carolina State Fair where attendees will meet with the fair’s safety and security team, tour the South Carolina State fairgrounds, and see a command center in real-time. AND visit with the University of South Carolina Command Center for a “show and tell” and tour.  AND the RCSD law enforcement will conduct a workshop on law enforcement/fair security relationships.

Networking and debrief sessions will be included with discussion on Best Practices hosted by the IAFE Safety and Security Committee.

The IAFE will secure discounted lodging and provide transportation from the lodging to the tours. Attendees will be responsible for their travel, lodging and most meals.  Field trip investment $100 per person. Limited space available, priority will be given to the individuals who complete all six Boot Camp courses.