By Karen Morfitt

DENVER (CBS4)– A parade of cattle and other livestock through the streets of downtown Denver on Thursday morning officially kicked off the start of the National Western Stock Show. The 16-day event brings hundreds of thousands of people into Denver every year.

DENVER, CO – JANUARY 09: Cowboys push a herd of Texas Longhorn steers down a city street as the annual cattle drive through downtown takes place January 9, 2020 in Denver, Colorado. The parade kicks off the yearly National Western Stock Show. (credit: Rick T. Wilking/Getty Images)

Austin Chitwood and his family brought their horses in to the city to help kick of this year’s event.

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“When people start showing up it gets a little hectic it definitely gets crazy out there especially with a lot of horse trailers its gets pretty busy,” he said.

PHOTO GALLERY: National Western Stock Show Parade

Busy is what Nation Western officials hope and plan for but this year the Central 70 Project will be underway in their backyard.

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Andy Jochem is the Construction Logistics manager for the event.

“We are doing everything we can to make it as easy as possible,” he said.

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For more than a year, he has been working to develop the best plan to keep everyone and everything moving.

“They’ve postponed any work along Brighton Boulevard to help ease and expedite the travel of our guests to get in get out,” Jochem said.

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On the stock show campus, he says they’re changing traffic flow for safety and switching up some of the parking areas, while offering shuttles and overflow at Coors Field.

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Things will look a little different but other than that locations may have changed a little bit but we have really close to the same amount of parking during our 100th anniversary,” he said.

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For those who attend the stock show year after year, like Chitwood it’s all part of the experience.

“Anything like that’s going to be is going to be kind of chaos for a little while,” he said.

Shuttles from every lot will run every eight minutes for the entire 16-day event.

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Get more information about the National Western Stock Show Parade here. For parking options, click here.

Karen Morfitt

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