Soon the screaming riders, sizzling fried food, and singing entertainers will have left.
That signals the end of the 2013 Central States Fair. You know we had a fun this year at the fair," said Ron Jeffries, general manager. "Just a lot of fun activities, a lot of great events, and we're very proud of the event that we put on here."
But Jeffries says a few things – like competing community activities and the sweltering heat – affected turnout. "Our numbers are probably down somewhere in the 6 to 8 percent, I'm guessing," said Jeffries.
Some food and drink vendors say lower numbers of fair–goers negatively affected their sales, but Jennifer Knight at Southern Specialities says it was a normal year for them."It was a pretty good this year. About the same as last year, maybe a little bit more," said Knight.
Knight says her location at the fair – in front of a stage and special rides – helped attract hungry and thirsty customers. "They brought in these crazy rides which put more people in this area, I don't know too much about people down the way," said Knight.
Additionally, Southern Specialties expanded their space and food selection. "We have more footage and we have more items so we're busier because, we were busier," said Knight.
Even though Knight and the other Central States Fair vendors and entertainers are packing up for the year, next year's fair is already in the works. "We started planning for next year about two weeks ago, before we went into this year," said Jeffries.