NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Security efforts ramp up one day before the kick off of the New Orleans Pride Festival.
Later today New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu will join local, state and federal officials to detail preparations ahead of the weekend event.
Organizers and the New Orleans Police Department have increased security and patrols throughout the French Quarter and nearby areas.
Members of the LGBT community are on edge following the mass shooting at a gay night club in Orlando that left 50 people dead and 53 others injured.
As the pride festival gets ready to take over parts of the French Quarter this weekend, the NOPD and organizers have safety plans in place.
New Orleans Police Chief Michael Harrison says that in addition to state police, the dozens of officers that patrol the French Quarter everyday will be working all weekend. There will also be plain clothes officers patrolling throughout the area.
Harrison adds that the SWAT team, gang unit and rapid response teams will be ready to respond if needed.
Meanwhile local bars will have extra security measures in place. Staff at the Bourbon Pub say they will have security guards perched on the balcony to keep an eye on things.
Darren mills of the Bourbon Pub said the mass shooting in Orlando has touched the nation in a way that only something of this magnitude can.
"Our fight has been years in the making, and this is not the time for us to sit down and take it lightly," Mills said.
Pride fest starts Friday with events in the French Quarter. The parade begins Saturday at 7 p.m.