WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – A decision has been made to cancel this year’s Eastern States Exposition, officials announced late Monday afternoon.
In a statement to 22News, The Big E said the decision to cancel this year’s fair was made “for the safety of our fairgoers, staff, vendors, entertainers, exhibitors, sponsors, suppliers, and the broader community.” This decision comes after weeks of back and forth debates between the town and fair officials on whether it was safe to hold the fair amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
“Please know that this decision was not made lightly. In fact, it was one of the hardest decisions we, as an organization, have had to make in modern times,” officials added. A message from Big E President and CEO Gene Cassidy is below:
The fair was set for September before the decision to cancel it was made on Monday. Those who’ve purchased for the Zach Williams concert, which was scheduled for September 20, will be refunded in full. The Big E Box Office contact ticket purchasers directly.
This is not the first time New England’s biggest fair has been put on hold due to uncertain times. The fair was put on hold during WWI and for five years during WWII. The fair was also impacted by the flood of 1936, the hurricane of 1938, and the September terrorist attacks.
We know our faithful fairgoers will be disappointed. This decision was difficult and complex but we all know in our hearts that it’s the right thing to do for the health and safety of the 1.6 million people who support us each year.
Our staff has spent the last few months working tirelessly to figure a way to bring our annual New England tradition to everyone this fall. Despite exploring all our options and planning extensively, we realized that The Big E experience that everyone has come to know and love would not be the same.
We care for each and every one of our fairgoers and our job is to help you make the best memories possible. Because of that, we must now switch our focus to the future. Please join us in doing that.The Big E
The Big E brings hundreds of thousands of people from across the country to the Town of West Springfield. Officials said they look forward to celebrating with fairgoers next year, September 17 – October 3.