WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – More than 80,000 fairgoers enjoyed the sites and sound on the opening day of The Big E Friday night.

Earlier in the day, 22News was at the great state fair as crowds descended on the fairgrounds. Many came out to enjoy some fresh air, rides, and fried food, making it extra special after 2020’s Big E was cancelled.

In total, 80,913 attended, officials told 22News. With COVID-19 still a concern, things are a little bit different at the fairgrounds with masks being required indoors.

“It’s been really good, the mask mandate is inside,” said Nick Guglielmi.

Another fairgoer, Anthony Saluzzi, added, “I feel safe I mean, I wore my mask inside took it off outside, and there’s purell everywhere.”

Representatives with The Big E said safety remains the top priority during the 17 days of the fair.