Coronavirus

Free Corn Dogs for a Pfizer Vaccine; Less Than a Month Away, Fair Issues Safety Briefing

Corny dogs and Big Tex hold this city together.
Corny dogs and Big Tex hold this city together. Kathy Tran
With less than a month until opening day, the fair is on “all systems go," which is great news for those of us who can’t go another year without being in the presence of Big Tex. To help those of us who plan to attend do so safely, and to help folks make an informed decision about whether they want to go, the State Fair of Texas released a Health & Safety Briefing yesterday.

It’s no surprise that face coverings and vaccinations are two of the key topics of the safety plan, and the fair is asking everyone to do their part and abide by the guidelines.

“We ask that those who attend do so because they are willing to follow our health guidelines – not because it’s mandated, but because it’s the right thing to do,” Karissa Condoianis, spokesperson & senior vice president of public relations said in a press release.

The current Dallas County order on the Required Use of a Face Mask in Certain Public Space requires that masks be worn when indoors by anyone 2 years old and up and medically able to wear one. The fair also asks that everyone, and especially those who aren’t vaccinated, wear a mask outdoors in crowded situations.

Additionally, some independent vendors may require everyone in their booth to wear a mask. If you’re planning to ride DART to the fair, you’ll need to wear a mask on board the trains.

Vendors are required to provide PPE for their staff, and the briefing says that all fairgoers should bring their own masks, but some will be available at the gates if you should forget to bring yours.

As for vaccinations, the State Fair’s more than 2,000 employees have all been fully vaccinated. All vendors (including those who serve food and beverages) have been encouraged to have all of their staff fully vaccinated as well.

The fair won’t require anyone to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test for entry, but the briefing encourages everyone who’s not vaccinated to “do your research, talk to your doctor, and consider a vaccine, both for your safety and the safety of others.”

Fair Money for a Vax

The best news is that anyone who hasn’t gotten a vaccination yet will be able to get one at the fair. Dallas County Health and Human Services will be offering free vaccines at Big Tex Circle from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. every day of the State Fair.

Anyone who wants to receive their first dose of the vaccine will receive the Pfizer vaccine, which now has full approval from the FDA. The Dallas County vaccine site will also have the Moderna vaccine available for people who are receiving their second dose of that vaccine.

The best part of all this is that a dose of the vaccine will come with $20 worth of free food and ride coupons. A successful initiative at the Wisconsin State Fair earlier this month offered a free cream puff to those getting vaccinated, but our fair is bigger and better, and so are our incentives.

click to enlarge Coupons are good for either food or a ride. - KATHY TRAN
Coupons are good for either food or a ride.
Kathy Tran
Getting a free corny dog is way better than a free cream puff, and just one would be enough incentive for most of us. If prices haven’t gone up since 2019, $20 will get you three Fletcher’s Original corny dogs and you’ll still have a few coupons left over.

We don’t know yet how many tickets the Big Tex Choice Awards finalist Pork Shots dish from Hans Mueller will cost, but getting shots with your shot sounds cool. You’ll have to add in a few more coupons to get a turkey leg, but you’ll have plenty for a ton of cotton candy or an order of fried Oreos if that’s your preferred pairing.

If you go for craft beer, you’ll only get one, but you’ll have coupons left over, and if you hit up the Beer Barn in front of the Cotton Bowl where beers are just 6 coupons each, you can get three beers.

Coupons are good for rides too, so you can use some of your takeaways to ride the Love Bug and thank yourself for helping stop the spread of this nasty bug. Or ride the Texas Star Ferris Wheel for the most fun and the best view you can have while social distancing.

We know how important the state fair is to Texans and especially to the vendors and staff who depend on the fair for income each year. So we’re sharing this statement from the fair reminding you to follow the guidelines, because Big Tex says so.

“During these times, we acknowledge that no event can be completely risk-free, and we’re counting on you to do your part to help us present as safe of an event as we can,” Condoianis said. She also notes that the guidelines are subject to change as conditions change. You can review the full State Fair of Texas Health and Safety Briefing on BigTex.com.
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By day, Kristina Rowe writes documentation that helps users navigate software, and as a contributor to the Dallas Observer she helps people find their way to food and fun. A long-time list-maker, small-business fan and happiness aficionado, she's also been an Observer reader for almost 40 years.
Contact: Kristina Rowe