So is the State Fair going to become a victim of its own popularity?
Another gorgeous weather day ushered in another humongous crowd. At some point, the grounds (similar to Summerfest) are too small for the crowd, and it just isn't fun to navigate them. Last year on the first Sunday, it was a similarly beautiful day (just like today) and I was dumb enough to try to go twice and just didn't enjoy myself.
This year on Day 4, I went to the Brewers game (and my first sunburn of the season!) and on the ride home headed south on 70th St from Bluemound Rd. I was amazed at the amount of cars parked along the street (as well as on the side streets heading west on Main and Adler).
But at what point does State Fair have to do something about weekend crowds? (Side note; Wanna have some fun? Go to the Fair tomorrow in the rain and storms and compare the crowds to a perfect Sunday.) There is no room for expansion of the grounds, with city streets to the south and west, a race track to the east and the Pettit Center and freeway to the north.
Maybe it is time to consider different price points for the weekends. There are already multiple discounts and promotions for the weekdays, but Demand-Based Pricing may need to be put into effect for the weekends. It is a tough proposition, though.
Let's say ticket prices are $20 on Saturdays and Sundays, and that cuts the crowd by 1/3 (If a great day is 100,000 in attendance, an increased price may bring in around 700,000 people). The State Fair itself would make bank, and the crowd would have some elbow room. But that would be a big blow to the concessionaires, many of whom pay mightily to set up shop for 11 days. Would it be fair to them to artificially inhibit attendance?
Or maybe I am all wet, and that everybody (except me) loves walking shoulder-to-shoulder and four inches at a time for a few hours once a year. If that's the case, you guys have fun on perfect Sundays and you can catch me on rainy Mondays.