It was a monumental task to ferry in 13,000 women and girls from across the East Coast into a massive stadium with few parking options — and have them out three hours later. But it went off nearly without a hitch, according to the security coordinator.
Security and logistics for the event marking the 80th yahrtzeit of Sarah Schenirer on Tuesday morning was overseen by Yanky Meyer, founder of Misaskim, a disaster relief organization. That entailed coordinating with an alphabet soup of law enforcement agencies to ensure security at Barclays Arena, a newly built stadium in the heart of downtown Brooklyn.
“We had 13,000 people dismissed at 12:40,” Meyer said, “and within an hour there was almost nobody there anymore.”
Close to 300 buses came in for the event, mostly from Brooklyn, Monsey and Lakewood, but some from as far away as Montreal and Baltimore. Stadium staff clicked in 12,500 tickets, while an estimated additional 500 people were subsequently allowed in without tickets.
As a conspicuously Jewish event taking place in a Brooklyn stadium, security was uppermost in the minds of police. Meyer said that they built an outer security perimeter exclusively for this event, in addition to other security measures.
“The police department cooperated 210 percent,” he said. “They had dozens and dozens of officers from all different agencies.”
Meyer noted that one feature that stood out among “all the security people” was the orderliness and cooperation of the participants, something they said was rare for such a young crowd.
“Dozens of them commented on it, from the top bosses down to the regular guys,” Meyer said. “There was no cursing, no arrests had to be made, so many people thanked them on the way out.”
“A massive kiddush Hashem was made there today,” he added.