FRESNO, California (KGPE) – The Big Fresno Fair is scheduled to start in just a few months but the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic closing businesses, organizers are feeling the pressure.
“The Big Fresno Fair is working through a spectrum of operational plans,” described its Deputy Manager Stacy Rianda, “with the goal to bring some aspect of this beloved tradition to our community in a healthy and safe manner, as guided by local and state officials.”
The Table Mountain Concert series held at the Paul Paul theater has been canceled – a hint that strict modifications will be in order if the fair does open its gates in October. Fresno County’s interim health director, Dr. Rais Vohra, agrees that big changes are in store.
“I will tell you, it won’t look like what it did last year. Even if it does go on, it will have to be done with safety foremost in mind as planning goes forth, but we have full confidence in the fair organizers.”
On the fair’s website, two of the possible plans are shared. The first is a reduced capacity and socially distanced fair. The second is a drive-thru style fair. In order for either to go ahead, Fresno County’s Jordan Scott says everything will have to fall into place.
“So, we’ve seen a lot of those types of events canceled. We want to see the fair continue, we’d like every other business open back up, the only way we’re going to be able to guarantee that sort of thing is for us all to share in this responsibility to minimize the risk.”
Oscar Santana has been living by the fairgrounds for twenty years and says it’s an annual tradition.
“I wait for the order of the city, cancel or no cancel, but I don’t like it. It’s business, it’s good economics for the people here.”
The organizers say they hope to have a clearer picture on what’s going to happen in August.
The Big Fresno Fair is the fourth largest fair in California and the largest annual event in the Central Valley.