Heightened security at Santa Clara County Fair in aftermath of Gilroy shooting

Officials in Santa Clara County reorganized security for Thursday's opening of the annual county fair in the wake of the Gilroy mass shooting. 

Minutes behind schedule and amid security concerns, the Santa Clara County Fair opened for its four-day run. 

"I'm here now but a little concerned. These copy-cat people," said Margaret Wolford as she exited the security screening station just inside the main entrance.

A staple of summer in the county for 75 years, this year's fair is overshadowed by Sunday's tragedy in Gilroy when alleged gunman Santino Legan opened fire, killing three people and wounding 16 others.  Many patrons who moved past metal detectors and wand screenings at the Santa Clara County Fair wondered if the fairground was safe. 

"We're here to support our community and have a little bit of fun and be safe. Security is amped up. That made me feel better walking in the door," said Kelly Crosby, a Cupertino resident who brought her two young children to the fair. 

At the ceremonial ribbon-cutting, before the fair gates opened, officials announced that they had restructured security in the wake of Gilroy. 

"We can't let a disaster change our life," said County Executive Jeff Smith, adding that people should feel safe to attend.

In addition to 200 attractions, and some new events to lure newbies, there are more metal detectors, wands, and private security at the perimeter. There's also an increase in the number of sheriff's deputies and equipment inside the grounds. 

"We have multiple k-9s that are bomb-sniffing and ammunition. We'll have air support. We'll have our tactical team staged there at the event," said Santa Clara County Sheriff Laurie Smith. "We're taking this very seriously because we want to make sure the public is confident that they'll be safe."

Fair officials said last year, more than 10,000 people attended each day. They said it's too soon to tell if the Gilroy shooting will have any impact on this year's attendance numbers.