Winston-Salem city leaders vote to have Carolina Classic Fair this year

Piedmont Triad News

Dixie Classic Fair (WGHP file photo)

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (WGHP) — After 2020 turned the newly-renamed Carolina Classic Fair into a drive-thru event, the City of Winston-Salem is working to determine what 2021 might look like.

Assistant City Manager Ben Rowe offered an update on fair preparations in a memo to the city council last week, and the city’s general government committee voted 5-3 during a meeting on Tuesday to have the fair.

The Carolina Classic Fair is scheduled for Oct. 1-10 at the Winston-Salem Fairgrounds.

In the memo, Rowe said that face coverings will be required indoors and will be strongly recommended for all guests. If you cannot wear a mask for medical reasons, city staff recommends that you do not attend to prevent exposure.

While there is not currently a limit on the number of guests, staff plans to keep an eye on attendance. If staff sees “an overwhelming attendance,” particularly on the midway ride area, staff may hold the gates until the crowd has dispersed.

Indoor buildings will have a one-way flow where possible, and carnival operators will frequently sanitize rides and touchpoints.

The 2020 Carolina Classic Fair would have been the first since the city changed the name from the “Dixie Classic Fair.”

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event was canceled. The cancelation meant a $3 million loss in revenue for the Winston-Salem Fairgrounds.

The drive-thru event enabled staff to reduce costs, but despite that reduction, the fair ended up costing the city $550,000.

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