2013 Indiana State fair a success
Impeccable weather is helping to drive up the numbers of visitors to the Indiana Sate Fair. As of Wednesday, 728,000 people visited the fair, up nine-percent from last year.
Late Sunday night, after another banner attendance on the fair's final day, organizers were hopeful the final attendance numbers would rival the 2009 record of 973,000.
And it's not hard to see why people are flocking to the Indiana State Fair.
"It's not too hot. It's not too cold. It's just right!" said one fair visitor. "We couldn't ask for better weather!" said another.
Those who sell ice cold beverages are thrilled. "This year here there have been a lot more crowds." explained Lester Benson of Doc's Root Beer. "It's been wonderful. Mother Nature did her job this year."
The fair enjoyed at least three record-setting attendance days. Organizers attribute that to good deals on admission and food, and the great weather.
"It's still sunny but it's not overly hot and you've got a nice breeze going on right now." said one man holding a baby.
Another visitor explained that in past years, the weather has been, "Just hot and muggy and not very comfortable." But this year it's been, "Nice!"
"You can wear shorts, you can wear jeans, you can wear sweatshirts. Everybody's comfortable," said a woman near the midway.
"People look at the weather. They listen to the weatherman every morning,"said Tim Nannet, manager of Pioneer Village, "And they want to know, is it going to rain? And that scares them off. And we've not had much rain during the fair. We've had cool temperatures. So much different than last year."
Last year, temperatures in the 90's were the norm. The heat was stifling. People used fans. The fair even gave away free water.
So beside the Year of Popcorn, 2013 will be remembered as the year at the Indiana State Fair the weather was near-perfect.
Official fair attendance numbers will be tallied and released on Monday. Last year 854,000 people visited the fair. This year that number will top 900,000 and perhaps 950,000.