Alaska State Fair canceled for first time since World War II

Published: May. 22, 2020 at 5:13 PM AKDT
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The Alaska State Fair Board of Directors and CEO announced the 2020 fair will be canceled in a statement Friday. This is the first time the fair has been cancelled since 1942 and was due to the uncertainty of having large gatherings during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We need to make decisions now based on what we know today, not how we hope things will be in August," Alaska State Fair CEO Jerome Hertel said in a prepared statement. "We have now reached the point that with all the conjecture surrounding mandates and recommendations for mass gatherings of this scale, it just will not be possible to deliver the same experience fairgoers have come to expect from the State’s largest celebration. Each day brings insurmountable challenges to overcome."

Hertel said the group still plans to produce a 2021 Alaska State Fair event, but for now they are working on creating events that are socially distant like pop-up drive-in movies, food truck fair events and drive through light displays.

People who have already purchased tickets for the 2020 fair will be reimbursed the price of the ticket.

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