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Fayetteville plans festive Fourth despite heightened terror threat

Posted June 30, 2015

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— The heightened threat of a terrorist attack targeted to the Independence Day holiday is not enough to force Fayetteville residents to change their plans.

Army veteran Jose Feliciano said he's proud of his service and looking forward to celebrating our nation's birthday.

"I'm not really concerned anybody would try something here because this is the most populated military town probably in the United States, probably in the world," he said.

Nancy Amorim, who lived in New York City in 2001 when terrorists took down the World Trade Center, said she and her visitors, in town for the Fourth, will strike a balance between awareness and fear.

"You have to be more aware nowadays with ISIS and everything going on," she said. "I don't think it's going to change my plans much."

Downtown Fayetteville is a gathering spot for large crowds at outdoor events just about year-round. The Dogwood Festival in the spring and International Festival in the fall draw thousands.

Fayetteville police will step up foot patrols during holiday events, and backpacks have been banned for visitors to the Airborne and Special Operations Museum.

Public safety comes down to the public, said Todd Joyce, police department spokesman.

"Report that suspicious activity," he said. "Something may seem trivial, may seem small. Don't feel like it's going to be a burden or worrisome to dispatch an officer. Call us."

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