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Staying safe this Oktoberfest

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LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) - Oktoberfest officially begins on Thursday.

The festivities include two parades and a lot of people, which has La Crosse police reminding everyone to use caution and remain safe while celebrating.

"Just be careful. A lot of people will be coming and going from the city," said Lt. Linnea Miller of the La Crosse Police Department. "There's going to be more pedestrian traffic, more car traffic, so be observant and above all, be patient."

During the parades, police also remind everyone that laws pertaining to alcohol are in full effect. Tickets can be issued for open containers and drinking in public spaces.

"Underage drinking will also not be tolerated," Miller said. "Tickets will be given for those caught drinking underage as well the information being sent back to each university here, as they may have their own rules that deal with that."

The parades are set for this week with Torchlight beginning at 7 p.m. Thursday on the northside. The Maple Leaf parade begins at 10 a.m. on Saturday.