TAMPA, Fla. - Despite signs that severe weather is headed our way, Occupy Tampa signs are still up, along with their tents.
"I've heard people saying it's not going to change anything and they're going to be out protesting just the same," said Occupy Tampa member Nathan Schwartz.
Occupy Tampa expects to welcome thousands to town for the Republican National Convention. Some have already arrived, and like Kevin Patten, just found out about the weather forecast for next week.
"Who cares? It's just a little rain," Patten said. "It's just a hurricane."
Patten is an Occupy Wall Street activist from California. He's been through one snow storm and isn't scared of Tropical Storm Isaac, even if he has no hurricane gear other than a sleeping bag.
"Only my charisma and my love," he said.
Patten is exactly the kind of RNC visitor that concerns emergency crews the most.
"Protesters and have no accommodation and may be living on the streets," said Hillsborough County Sheriff's Spokesman Larry McKinnon. "That's an additional burden we'd have to deal with."
According to EOC Spokeswoman Holley Wade, extra shelters will open along with additional bus routes if need be.
"This isn't something out of the ordinary, it's just a little bigger," Wade said. "We're very, very aware and very prepared to deal with that situation."
McKinnon says deputies knew this might be an issue, and also have plans to keep the peace amid the threat of a natural disaster while thousands are homeless.
"No one plans anything in August without considering hurricanes," he said.
The one thing they can't do, McKinnon says, is force people like Patten to take cove.
"What about lightning? It's not going to hit me," Patten said. "I think everything's going to be OK. I came over here for a reason and everything's going to be alright."
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