WEST SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) – Officials have announced that this year’s Big E fair, set for September, has been canceled.
Fair officials noted that the fair was canceled “For the safety of our fairgoers, staff, vendors, entertainers, exhibitors, sponsors, volunteers and the broader community.”
The move comes following an extremely popular drive-thru food event this weekend at the Eastern State Exposition fairgrounds.
Eastern States Exposition President and CEO Gene Cassidy added:
"We know our faithful fairgoers will be disappointed. This decision was difficult and complex but we all know in our hearts that it’s the right thing to do for the health and safety of the 1.6 million people who support us each year.
Our staff has spent the last few months working tirelessly to figure a way to bring our annual New England tradition to everyone this fall. Despite exploring all our options and planning extensively, we realized that The Big E experience that everyone has come to know and love would not be the same."
In his over two-minute long message, Cassidy did not mention whether or not there would be an alternative or another drive-thru event like the successful one held this past weekend.
However, we spoke with one vendor who told us that he heard mention of holding another drive-thru event later in the summer.
Cassidy said this isn’t the first time the fair has encountered changes in the wake of a global crisis, saying The Big E was put on hold during World War II.
All of this comes as rolling advertisements for the fair’s music lineup continued to play outside the fairgrounds as late as this afternoon
The Big E box office will be in touch with those who have tickets to the Zach Williams concert on September 20 for a refund.
The 2021 fair is scheduled for September 17 through October 3, 2021.
Western Mass News will continue to follow this story and will have more information as it becomes available.