Big Fresno Fair Has Come to an End

October 14, 2008 12:58:14 AM PDT
The 13 day run of the Big Fresno Fair has come to an end. While official attendance numbers are not being released fair officials say it was a roller coaster ride.The fair is an extra day longer this year and many vendors say that really saved them from lower numbers. Fair officials say the discount days helped offset low attendance on other days.

The Big Fresno Fair has seen a season of highs and lows.

John Alkire said, "To be very candid. The run has been very much like riding a roller coaster. We've had some up days and then soft days and then soft days and up days. Saturday we had over 80 thousand people here."

The highs were extreme and helped balanced out the lows to keep sales comparable to years past. Some food vendors said they did better this year, others said they've seen better days.

Dane Baldwin said, "We have 23 tons of flour and cinnamon and sugar delivered three days before the fair and I think we may be taking a pallet home so that's still pretty good."

Country Faire Cinnamon Rolls broke a record last year for sales. This fair their numbers are down about 8 to 10 percent. Chicken Charlie's says they are up about 8 to 10 percent more than last year.

Tony Boghosian said, "We just sold out of frog legs right now. It's the last day. We got just a few hours to go and we actually sold out. The frog legs are one of the few items that are really hard to get."

Just before the fair ended Monday night Big Bubba's Barbecue estimated sales down 8 percent overall. The extra day made a big difference.

Carlos Farias said, "In the beginning it was kinda like we didn't know what was happening because it was kinda like the weather. We were down like 20 percent at one point the first weekend but them the weather turns around and we do great."

The economy has not changed the number of dare devils taking the plunge. 1 thousand people either jumped or took basket rides on this skyscraper during the fairs run.

Kyle Connelley said, "Overall from last year we're up, definitely up. Without even having the extra day this year we're still up."

And in a sign of our tough economic times, fair organizers say they saw a huge attendance boost on days they offered deep discounts.

"The days that tracked real strong and were right on target for what we thought were the two coupon days. Three dollar Mondays, two dollar Tuesdays, huge days."

Official attendance numbers will be out Tuesday. Fair organizers say the concert that was the biggest success was Disney teen star Demi Lovato followed by Chicago and Pepe Aguilar.

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