South Plains Fair implements clear bag policy, beer sales
LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - For the first time ever, the South Plains Fair kicks off this weekend with two new features - a clear bag policy, and beer sales. Organizers first posted to Facebook about the clear bag policy last week, drawing some pushback.
“Everywhere you go now for big events and stuff, they’re kind of implementing that. People are used to it and it’s just kind of for the safety and security of everybody involved. It’s always been a family-friendly environment and so we’re just kind of following suit with the people that have done it for their events,” General Manager Jennifer Wallace said.
Also for the first time this year, there will be beer sales at the fair. A third-party vendor will run a few stations on the fairgrounds. Wallace says it’s the same vendor who does the tailgating at Texas Tech games, so it will be done the safe way.
“We talk about, you can go to Chuck E. Cheese, which is a family-friendly environment, and you can get a beer there. So, we thought, well, why not? You know, we’re trying to kind of go with young and old and so maybe, you know the young ones can enjoy the rides, the older - the food and partake in a beer and just have a good time,” Wallace said.
Wallace says Lubbock is the last fair in Texas to start selling beer. Because of the alcohol sales this year, Wallace is upping security. Instead of the usual 11-12 officers, there will be 18 on the fairgrounds.
“So, there will be a bigger presence of security, not that we foresee any problems, but it’s always good to have as many as we, as we can. Just so you see them and if you need anything, they’re there for your help,” she said. “That’s why we’re here, we’re here for families for people, the Lubbock community to come out and not worry about anything and just have a great time.”
While ordering some fried favorites, fairgoers can push some money back into the Lubbock Community. More than 40 nonprofits are busy setting up booths to raise money for their cause. Wallace says the fair helps put about a million dollars back into the community. Dean Richards, the outreach pastor at Lubbock Dream Center, says it’s one of the non-profit-only fundraisers all year.
“Last year we helped close to 800 people get their GED tests, help them get their high school diploma. We help with groceries. We help with haircuts, free haircuts for the neighborhood. You know, to a single mom or to a large family a free haircut’s a big deal,” Richards said.
Monday-Friday fairgoers can park and get in for free before 1 p.m. Wallace encourages people to grab some lunch and support these non-profits.
The gates open Thursday night for Buck-a-Ride night with the changes in place. The fair lasts until Saturday, Oct. 1. Find the hours, prices, and attractions here.
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