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Who profits from the fair??

Original post made by Just curious, Mohr Park, on Jul 7, 2010

We were at the fair last friday and saw tons of people shelling out money for food, vendors, arcades, entrance fees, parking, rides....Where does all the money go? Who profits? The city of Pleasanton? Alameda County? The fairgrounds? The guys in the arcade booths putting our fives in their pockets? Just curious who makes the money? Does any actually go to Pleasanton (other than the out of towners spending money at our restaurants, gas stations, etc). Where does the fair money go?

Comments (16)

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Posted by no money for pleasanton
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2010 at 9:38 am

"out of towners spending money at our restaurants"
You're kidding, right? During the fair the downtown restaurants and merchants might as well close up. In fact, in some years there have been week long closures as merchants scheduled their own vacations at that time. Out of towners eat junk food at the fair, residents take their families and eat junk food at the fair. Even though fair attendees spend a pile of money on rides, food and games it would surprise me if a single merchant made even a small percentage of their normal revenue during that time.
Pleasanton does not get revenue from the fair, a private company runs it. Pleasanton might benefit a little from sales tax revenues. So, just how many of those fair booths do you suppose are actually reporting, and paying taxes on, their cash revenue?


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Posted by maverick
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2010 at 9:51 am

There is a myth that big events support local business. It is a croak. Ask any business surrounding an area and you will find there is little to no business that comes from the fair or the year events that come from the fair grounds. Yeah, there's a little money parceled out here and there to pay for some minimal expenditures, but none that translate into business for the surrounding area.


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Posted by not willing to say
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2010 at 4:22 pm

there is a company called Aramark - they "own or run" the food concessions at the Sharks, Raiders, Earthquakes and also get the money from the happenings at the fair grounds.
Aramark must pay the ground owners for the booths. I'm not sure if it is considered a catering company or what but they provide all the food and drink at sporting events and the Good Guys car shows, The Scottish Games (lots of fun!) and most anything else that happens at the fair grounds.
I don't know if the people that own the stadiums owns them and they are a sub or what. But that is what I do know.


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Posted by steve
a resident of Parkside
on Jul 8, 2010 at 8:19 am

Regardless of who profits to support their families and pay their bills, enjoy the fair. It's fun, it's only a couple of weeks out of the year and it's good family entertainment. Especially the art, crafts and 4H entries, which are are locals from our community.
If you feel you need a piece of the action, go work for Butler Amusements, Aramark, or whomever works to make this event possible.


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Posted by Bill
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jul 8, 2010 at 8:34 am

There is a lot of mis -information in the above comments. For example, think of all the locals employed by the Fair.
Perhaps the one to ask is Rick Pickering, who runs the Fairgrounds.
Again, the above comments are way off the mark.....


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Posted by mooseturd
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Jul 8, 2010 at 8:53 am

mooseturd is a registered user.

In 2002, the fair contributed $195 million in economic impact to Alameda County, created 1,854 local jobs and generated about $3.2 million in local tax revenues.

The Alameda County Fair, a nonprofit organization, operates and conducts the fairgrounds and annual fair on behalf of the county. It does not receive money from the state general fund.


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Posted by Tango
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Jul 8, 2010 at 9:19 am

I have worked at the fair as have many of my friends and children. It's a way to pick up some extra spending money and you meet a lot of great people. My Grand children do FFA projects for the fair and learn a lot about being in front of the public and doing a great job showing animals. ( sheep, pigs) It is a good way to show the public where our meat comes from. Some children have no idea where their food comes from, The fair is a wonderful way to educate them. I love the woodworking projects in the Young Ca. building. Such talent.


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Posted by Judy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 8, 2010 at 10:24 am

Bill, Moose, and Tango are correct. I do know last year in a ranking of all fairs in the US,of county AND state fairs, Alameda County is in the top ten !! Think of pathetic fairs like Contra Costa, most are dusty 3 -5 day fairs. Ours is always 17 days, beautiful, shady trees, great free concerts twice every night, horse racing. Because of all that, it attracts serious vendors. It is a CLASSY fair and Pickering does a great job of trying to offer what we want. Our youth can learn from all the offerings of animals, art, and a chance for practicing their talents....preparing to be the next American Idol. It's fun for all and does provide jobs for many/.


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Posted by April
a resident of another community
on Jul 8, 2010 at 10:29 am

I'd like to clear up a few incorrect statements in this blog. The fair employs 600 people not including the hundreds more hired by the vendors that have booths at the Fair. Additionally, Ovations who is the food concessionaire on grounds (not Aramark) pays taxes on the alcohol sales as well as employs people too. There are many hotels who receive lots of business from all the fair partners, vendors and staff that stay locally while working the fair. While the fair event may or may not add business to downtown (depends on the merchants), there are many more year round events that do including the Goodguys car shows, Scottish Games, Del Valle Dog Show and more. Just check around at Vic's or Deans on these weekends and see all the new faces spending money downtown..or call a Pleasanton hotel and ask them how many rooms are booked from events at the fairgrounds translating revenue back to the city.

The Fair is run by a non-profit with no tax support. While the fair event barely breaks even (free concerts, attractions, staffing, security, fire costs et) horse racing revenue helps to provide paved roads, new signs and maintain the buildings and grounds for year round use. All revenue is put back into the grounds in capital projects and maintenance. Feel free to call us at 925-426-7600 if you have questions on the economic impact Alameda County Fairgrounds brings to the local region.


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Posted by Salsa
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Jul 8, 2010 at 11:15 am

I have been to many fairs in northern calif and by far the alameda county fair is the cleanest and most fun. It's park like setting, race track and history adds alot to our quality of life here.


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Posted by Nosy Neighbors
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Jul 8, 2010 at 11:59 am

Who profits from the fair? I'll tell you. It's those evil republican corporate, capitalists that are profiting! Plus there's also the Obama-Marxist/Socialists out there making sure that everybody stuffs themselves with funnel cakes, corn dogs, cotton candy, beer & hot dogs which will insure the need for a socialized medical care system in the US.

Oh yeah, the toothless meth-head carnies & all the "support staff" like the safety inspectors, wasp nest checkers, security & others get a reprieve from filing for unemployment for another two weeks.


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Posted by Informed Resident
a resident of Mohr Park
on Jul 9, 2010 at 10:32 am

Wow, we have one of the top rated Fairs in the country! Our Fair is growing while most other Fairs seem to be on the verge of collapse. Look at the Fairs in Santa Clara, Antioch, Stockton, Vallejo, San Mateo, even the Cow Palace - all of the Fairs around us are falling apart and ours is great! No wonder press stories have been saying that other Fairs try to copy ours. We should find out who is responsible for our Fair's successs and clone them!


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Posted by Tango
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Jul 9, 2010 at 10:39 am

Nosy neighbor I thank you are wrong. Yes the food can be bad for you, but it is the fair. Have you even been to the parts of the fair that represents the people in your County. The 4 H exhibit and he FFA projects the, and wonderful art exhibits. The old time museum. The flower gardens. The Young California Building. A lot of people just like me, and maybe you, look forward to working at the fair because it is usually a very happy place. I even enjoy the commercial buildings. My dad use to call them the "Slice um Dice um buildings" If you don't like the grunge areas don't go there. No one is making you go to the fair if you hate it that much. The rest of us will go and enjoy ourselves. It is part of good summer fun.


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Posted by Mike
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Jul 10, 2010 at 3:52 pm

Grand memories from childhood and the overall feeling of happiness that comes from growing up with such a wonderfully representative piece of American culture is what I get from having the fair in my backyard. Sure it's not Disneyland or the Top of the Mark, but summer just couldn't happen without it.

Who profits from the fair? We all do!


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Posted by maja7
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Jul 11, 2010 at 1:50 pm

I grew up in this town and always looked forward to the Fair each summer. Now, my children look forward to it, too. It's alot of fun. If you don't like the Fair, please don't go. I personally don't like putting on fancy clothes and going to the Opera... so I don't go. As far as the money, is that what everything is about thesedays? I think it's just because for the first time in most of our lives, we are experiencing an economic crisis. I can't imagine my Grandparents who lived during the Great Depression, whining and moaning and groaning about things. They did what they had to do for themselves and their families.

Since when did we as a generation/country become such whiners? It's so unflattering.


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Posted by a very nice time
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 12, 2010 at 9:09 pm

The India dancing was most impressive.


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