The Big E is just one week away - WFSB 3 Connecticut

The Big E is just one week away

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(Western Mass News photo) (Western Mass News photo)

One week from today, The Big E opens for it is 17 day run.  This year, the fair celebrates 101 years.  

Organizers are expecting bigger crowds than ever.

It is organized chaos at The Big E fairgrounds, but after 101 years, getting ready for opening day is like greasing a well-oiled machine.

Our Western Mass News SkyDrone captured the calm before the storm as hundreds of workers, vendors, stage production crews, and food prep vendors get ready for opening day.
"Things look great.  We have a beautiful day for set up and it looks to be that we're ahead of schedule," said Noreen Tassinari with the Eastern States Exposition.

Amusement rides on the midway are going up one-by-one.

A brand new 'big top' that can fit more than 1,600 people inside is being raised quickly. 

"It's a lot of work.  We start at 7 in the morning 'til 8 at night.  We were here until 10 last night," said Luis Garcia, tent master with Circus Sarasota.

However, this puzzle will be together come September 15.

"Oh yeah, oh yeah, the show must go on," Garcia added.

This year, Big E organizers expect record crowds.

"The past few years, we've had good weather.  We've been blessed.  We've had between 1.4 and 1.5 million people that come during the 17 days," Tassinari added.

The owners of Jack's Fries and Tootsies Fried Dough said that The Big E is in their blood.

"My grandpa started this business 55 years ago.  Oh yeah, it's right born in the DNA," said Hunter Piche with Piche Concessions.

Piche told Western Mass News that they got started yesterday.

"You get the trailers on the ground.  We get our landscaping out and make everything look pretty and then we just make sure everything's ready to go before we open," Piche added.

Covering 175 acres, The Big E actually started as an agricultural showcase, which - to this day - remains part of the fair.   

Today, the fair also includes attractions like Camel Kingdom.  The stars of which are, conveniently located next to the Western Mass News Big E home at the foot of the Avenue of the States.  

All will be ready for opening day - Friday, September 15. 

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