Jags fans ready for annual scrimmage

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Jaguars fans were getting a chance Friday night to see what the team has been working on in training camp.

The annual scrimmage is free and open to the public.

Fans will have a chance to win one of 90 practice jerseys, and they'll even get a chance to get some autographs from their favorite players after the game.

Gates opened at 5 p.m. The scrimmage kicks off at 6:30 p.m.

Parking is available in the stadium lots for $5.

There will be discounted concessions, and some team gear will be on sale for 50 percent off.

Fans are also encouraged to donate to Wolfson Children's Hospital. All fan donations will be matched by the Jaguars.

JSO budget cuts to affect downtown event officers

The Jaguars' scrimmage isn't the only event going on downtown Friday night. The Jacksonville Suns have a baseball game, WWE presents Raw World Tour, and The Jacksonville Landing is hosting a concert.

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office says off-duty officers are working the events, as provided by the sponsor, but moving forward into the next budget year, that won't be the case. Sponsors or promoters will need to hire traffic control and police services for their events.

JSO will meet its commitment to provide traffic control for the four Jaguars home games that occur before Oct. 1, the start of the budget year. But that service is not budgeted for next year.

"We do anticipate increased inconvenience for people attending special events where off-duty officers and (community service officers) have not been hired by the sponsoring organization," JSO spokeswoman Lauri-Ellen Smith said. "We cannot use on-duty assets for this activity, except in emergency situations, as they will be working their regular patrol assignments. We can no longer afford to provide this service at no cost to the event promoter or the city."

Channel 4 spoke with some downtown businesses like the City Hall Pub to find out what they think will happen to the area if those police jobs are cut.

"The mayor is talking about revitalizing the downtown area, and I don't think that laying off the police department is going to be a big aid to him by doing that," City Hall Pub general manager Tom Spiess said.

"It would be chaos if you didn't have officers out here directing traffic. Just too many people," said Nader Oweis, owner of What's Good.

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