San Francisco Hopes to Avoid Destructive Celebrating

City braces to avoid World-Series like celebration

San Francisco city officials preparing for the 49ers' Super Bowl game against the Baltimore Ravens are hoping to avoid a repeat of the violence and vandalism that marred World Series celebrations last year.
A total of 36 people were arrested during post-game celebrations in October after the San Francisco Giants' World Series victory against the Detroit Tigers, 23 of them for felonies. Celebrants lit a number of bonfires in the middle of Mission Street, broke windows and, in one notorious incident, set a Muni 8X-Bayshore Express bus on fire at Market and Kearny streets.
Police Chief Greg Suhr said after the World Series that the destructive behavior of fans caught the department and other emergency responders by surprise. A previous World Series victory celebration in 2010 had been less volatile.

In response, police and city officials are making plans to ensure the Feb. 3 Super Bowl celebrations - assuming there is a celebration - go more smoothly.

"We want the city to be both celebratory and safe for everyone," Mayor Ed Lee said at a news conference.

"I'm really concerned about the small businesses that got hurt during the World Series," he added.

Lee said city officials plan to talk to small businesses in the Mission District and elsewhere that were most affected by the World Series violence starting next week. He also said bars need to be aware of how much alcohol they're serving.

Police are working with other city departments and will have additional officers on hand to target potential problem areas and protect public safety, including the Mission District, police spokesman Officer Albie Esparza said.

"We want to show the nation that our fans are high class and that we won't tear down the city," Esparza said.

Esparza said the city is also working with the San Francisco 49ers. Following the team's NFC Championship win Sunday, officials there tweeted to fans asking them to "celebrate responsibly and not tear up the city that they love," Esparza said.

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