Big Fresno Fair organizers preparing despite heat

September 30, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
Crews preparing for the Big Fresno Fair have been working in the heat and getting ready for opening day later this week.

There are just three more days before the Big Fresno Fair opens its doors and crews have been out here working nonstop making sure the above normal temperatures do not derail any plans.

The sizzling temperatures did not keep any meat off Nick Bowles' fiery grill on Sunday.

"It's a fun job in here, we're going to feed 1300 people today," Bowles said.

Bowles has been BBQing at the Big Fresno Fair for 20 years and says the unseasonably hot weather won't keep him from feeding the masses.

"Now the heat's not bad, we're going to BBQ anyway," Bowles said.

Inside the Fur and Feathers Barn, exhibitors were busy moving in their animals getting them ready for the big show.

Kaylie Craft with Clovis FFA was grooming her rabbit before placing it inside its cage. Both were prepared for the extreme temperatures.

"We brought cold, frozen water bottles in their cages when it gets really hot, so they can lay up against them," Craft said.

Transporting the animals during warm temperatures can be hazardous.

"Well today is an especially day of concern because the animals are stressed by being moved," fair veterinarian Stephanie Murphy said.

To keep the animals inside the barn cool, fair organizers installed rotating fans by the ceiling to help those most vulnerable - the big-eared critters.

"They're susceptible to cardiac arrest from heat, so we're trying to keep them cool," Murphy said.

Back outside at the Table Mountain Rancheria Park crews were filling up the newest addition with cool water. The 12 hundred gallon water "cloud tank" brings a piece of Hollywood to the fair.

"This is a tank that we purchased from George Lucas films. It was used in over 300 feature motion pictures," fair CEO John Alkire said.

As preparations for the fair wind down the heat seems to be the last thing on peoples' minds.

"We're ready for heat, and actually even if it rains, we're ready for rain as well, the fair will go on," Alkire said.

Organizers say rain or shine the fair will go on, bigger and better than before.


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