New Mexico State Fair plans for normal year with a few changes

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – After last year’s cancellation, the state is still planning on a normal fair this year but with a few wrinkles. Organizers with the New Mexico State Fair said they’re expecting hundreds of thousands of visitors just like in the pre-pandemic days.


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“We’ve got tons of staff who are going to be on hand cleaning, sanitizing, we’ve got fogging machines,” said Wyndham Kemsley, a spokesperson with the New Mexico State Fair. “I don’t know if you’ve seen them, they’re super cool, they sanitize an entire area.”   

Kemsley said they’ll be more hand sanitizing stations throughout the grounds and they’ll also have staff cleaning the restrooms more frequently. This year the fair will have about 50 food vendors, 21 attractions and will have 44 rides from their longtime partners, Reithoffer Shows, which is where you’ll see the major reminders of the pandemic. Their workers will be checking the temperatures of every guest before they enter the midway and will be cleaning each ride after every ride cycle. They don’t believe that will add significant wait times.

“I don’t think that there’s going to be substantial delays, like I said Reithoffer Shows are one of the best companies in the country for midway operations,” said Kemsley. “They know what it’s like at the fair, they know you don’t want to be waiting in really long lines.”   

The fair will not require masks, but organizers are encouraging the unvaccinated to wear them at all times. If state rules change the fair will follow suit. The state fair starts September 9 and runs through September 19. 

Lastly, as is the case with just about every business in New Mexico these days, Expo New Mexico said it’s short workers for the fair and is looking to hire right away.

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