WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Crowds continue to descend on The Big E fairgrounds, as the Eastern States Exposition celebrates opening day for the region’s largest fair.
A high opening day turnout for The Big E, showing that many people were ready to get back to the fair way of life, despite COVID-19 cases on the rise. The Big E is back, and with 2020’s edition cancelled, this opening day was extra special. However, with COVID-19 still a concern, things are different at the fairgrounds, and that includes a mask requirement for indoors.
Moazea Ahmad from Amherst said, “COVID really took it under, but it’s fun to have it here, there are a lot of people here, some are wearing masks, some aren’t. But I’d say it’s relatively safe.”
Gene Cassidy, President of Eastern States Exposition also spoke on the mask requirements indoors, stating “Given the circumstances of COVID, it’s important for the greater good of the community.”
At the entrances to the state buildings, there are signs that remind people about the indoor mask mandate being imposed by the town. 22News found out not all buildings at The Big E will require you to have it on.
“You have to define what’s indoors. All of our brick and mortar buildings are indoors, that’s obvious. We have a lot of 3 sided tents, and the health department said that is not indoors, there is circulation,” said Cassidy.
The coliseum arena also doesn’t fall under the indoor mask requirement. There are also plenty of sanitation stations, and signage asking sick people to refrain from entering any building. Cassidy said safety remains paramount for them, as well as ensuring a fun experience at the 2021 Big E. And we’ve lucked out so far with the weather for opening day, cloudy, but no rain.