Trouble on the Water

On Memorial Day weekend, the Spring River is the place to be.

Known for it's beauty and location, it's attracting quite a crowd.

"This is the busiest first weekend I've seen since 1982," said Lindy Greene.

But the larger the number of visitors, the bigger the party.

"It's more than a party on the river. It's a party on the river, it's a party at the campsites that night, it's a party the next morning," said Nathan Jeffers.

Those visiting from out of town, say they just want to have a good time.

"Hopefully we'll drink a few beers and have a good time. We've got a couple of guys we are toting behind us in inter-tubes and we are going to meet up with our friends and party on the banks today," said Jeffers.

But those who frequent the spring river say the party is out of control.

"What has happened during the last two or three years, we feel like has developed into a Mardi Gras situation. We want to try to get a handle on that," said Lt. Steve Taylor of Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.

Therefore, dozens of officers from around the state a patrolling the river in and out of uniform looking for...well you name it.

"There's a little bit of everything. A lot of things you don't want to see. There's quite a bit of stuff that goes on, on this beautiful river," said Taylor.

Those who rent canoes on the river say it just goes with the flow of the crowd.

"It's like anything else, when you get a lot of people together you are going to get a lot of different behavior. You are going to get a lot of people who behave differently when you put that many together," said Greene.

But for those trying to keep Arkansas' waterways a place for everyone, the time to take action is now.

"We would like the river to be available for all types of people. We are not trying to keep people from coming up here. We don't want that at all. We want the river to be utilized by everyone," said Taylor.

Arkansas Game and Fish Commission will have officers on the river all weekend cracking down on littering, glass bottles, and lewd behavior.

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