The State Fair of Texas wants to know whether staying in South Dallas matters to visitors.
A new interactive survey available at several kiosks in Fair Park asks visitors a series of questions related to the fair, but two left some visitors wondering if the fair is looking for a way out of Fair Park.
The questions are:
- How likely would you be to attend the State Fair of Texas if the location was moved out of Fair Park?
- Please rate your agreement with the following statement: The City of Dallas should work with the Fair to ensure it remains in Fair Park for another 130 years.
Given the current debate over the future of Fair Park and the role the State Fair of Texas should or should not have in it, it's a legitimate question. But a spokesperson for the fair said visitors should not read too much into it.
"We don't want to leave. We want to be here. We've been here for 130 years, we want to be here for 130 more. This gives us the ability to know if that matters to our fairgoers as well," said Karissa Condoianis, the fair's vice president of public relations.
Mesquite resident Jimmy Nutt said taking the fair out of Fair Park should not be an option. He wants all sides to come together and do what's mutually beneficial.
"There's going to be a lot of fallout about the state fair being moved from here," he said. "If the city doesn't work with them, even with all the politics and things that's going on, there would be a lot of fallout."
The fair's contract with the city of Dallas is supposed to last for another decade, but a growing number of city leaders have questioned whether Fair Park's largest tenant is doing enough to maintain Fair Park.
The state fair's contract with the city runs for the next decade.
For some, the fair's place in Fair Park is not only about location, but also tradition.
"Fair Park is known for the fair. They're synonymous," said visitor Jose Gallo. "If they could find a venue that would be easier to get to traffic-wise, I think it'd be a good idea, but this is what I'm accustomed to."