Monday, September 12, 2011

3 days! 3 days! 3 days!

The excitement is building!

The grounds are transforming right before my very eyes. There are orange and blue umbrellas (reminiscent of a circus, and boy are they HUGE!) set up right outside the Brooks building next to the home of the Court of Honor Stage, along with rows upon rows of vendors and exhibitors who are beginning to set-up for the Fair’s 17 day run.

I must say, it’s an amazing feeling to be behind the scenes and get to experience what it takes to put together such a spectacular and memorable for the over 1 million fairgoers who venture through the gates expecting a fantastic Fair experience.

Last week was the Employee Training event, where over 500 employees and staff who work the Fair gathered together to learn about what is in store for this year. Everything from the entertainment venue and special exhibits and attractions on the grounds were covered. Oh, and not to forget the raffles and the hot dogs provided to us at the end of the presentation.

I was given the job of handing out the Employee Handbooks to everyone who showed up to the event. You could see the excitement in the eyes of each individual who passed through the entry gate into the Coliseum. It is rewarding to see the overwhelming amount of dedication these individuals put forth, helping make the Fair successful year after year.

Growums at the 2011 Big E!
We all know that The Big E has gastronomic delights, such as the Big E Craz-E Burger, located at The Big EZ CafĂ©, and the newly named Hot Diggid-E Dog, at Captain Nemo’s Galley.

On Specialty Foods Day, Friday, September 30, from 10 a.m. to noon, and again 4 p.m. through 8 p.m., children are in for a special treat! Between these times, those who pass through the gates will receive a coupon voucher for one free “Growums”, redeemable at Farm-A-Rama.

Now, you may be wondering what exactly is Growums? Growums not only teaches children that they can grow their own food and help the environment, as well as emphasize the importance of healthy eating, but it also gives them gardening knowledge and shows them the skills it takes to become a successful gardener – no matter what their age.

Each kit comes with everything you need to start growing your own delicious vegetables or herbs, and come in six varieties including Herb Garden, Pizza Garden, Salad Garden, Stir-Fry Garden, Taco Garden and Ratatouille Garden. We will be distributing the Herb Garden kit.

Your Growums experience doesn’t end there. Before you start growing your seeds, you can register your garden at to take part in an interactive gardening adventure. You can also find out more information by visiting the website.

Tickets still available for entertainment on the Comcast Arena Stage!
There are still tickets available for Darius Rucker, Friday, September 23 at 7:30 p.m., priced at $39/$29; Reba, Sunday, October 2 at 7:30 p.m., priced at $69/$59/$49 and single-seat tickets only for Blake Shelton, Saturday, October 1 at 7:30 p.m. They are going quick, so be sure to make your purchase before they are gone!

This just in!
The Equine Arena project is nearing completion! I have received word that the project will be completed in its’ entirely by the start of the ESE Horse Show on Wednesday. The footing for C-Barn was installed September 8. Overall, the arena looks spectacular!

In case you were wondering, The ESE Horse Show, sponsored by Williams Distributing, schedule is as follows:

Hunters & Jumpers, Hunt Seat Equitation, and the USHJA Zone 1 Championship, Sept 14-18
Saddlebreds, Hackneys, Morgans, Friesians and Arabians, Sept. 22-25
The Big E Draft Horse Show, with The Big E $30,000 Six-Horse Hitch Showdown, Sept. 29 – Oct 2
4-H Horse Show, Sept. 22-24.

Other exciting events include: Horse Pulling, Sept. 19; Ox Pulling, Sept. 20; and Sheepdog Trials, Sept. 26 and 27 at 10 a.m.
Program & Coupon Books will be delivered soon!
After months of preparing the 2011 Big E Program & Coupon Book, they should be arriving in the Marketing department office sometime this week! Everything you will need to know about the 2011 Big E will be presented to you in a beautiful format, with plenty of information and pictures to accompany. What we call the “guidebook”, will be sold by the Elks on the fairgrounds. Whether you’re searching for that perfect sweater and cannot remember the vendor, or you want to know what’s happening in the Mallary Complex or Coliseum, be sure to pick up your copy when you visit the Fair this year!

Wow. There is a lot going on! And it is only going to get crazier from here. I am totally ready to jump in and experience the Fair in its entirety! I will see you on the grounds of The Big E!

Friday, September 2, 2011

13 Days & Counting until The Big E!

Just 13 days until the gates open! Excited? I sure am! But hey, who’s counting? Looking out the Brooks Building from the Marketing department, I can see the yellow benches where the Court of Honor stage will be set-up.

The Court of Honor Stage, sponsored by Comcast, will be hosting free entertainment including: Extreme Vegas, daily at 11, 3 & 8 p.m.; Frankie Lymon’s Legendary Teenagers, Sept. 16 – 22 at 1 & 6:30 p.m., The Buckinghams, Sept 23 – 27 at 1 & 6:30 p.m. and Yvonne Elliman, Sept. 28 – Oct 2 at 1 & 6:30 p.m.

Just to the left of my view is Hampden Avenue, which just received its make-over! It is complete, and looks fabulous! Fairgoers this year will have nothing but smooth sailing for their visit at the Fair.

Hot Diggid-E Dog
This year, the Fair will have two delicious hot dog creations available to fairgoers. The first, the New England Dog, a hot dog wrapped in bacon with baked beans and cheddar cheese is sure to have your taste buds in an uproar. Also, Captain Nemo’s Galley’s newest creation, the Hot Diggid-E Dog, is a hot dog wrapped in bacon with spicy coleslaw and fresh jalapeno, all in a gourmet hot dog roll from Bernardino’s Bakery. It got its name from a “Name That Dog” Facebook contest and the winning entry was selected August 22. Congratulations to Heather Liebensohn, of Shelton, Conn., who won four tickets to The Big E and four Hot Diggid-E Dogs!

Be sure to try one, if not both of these creations!

Other new foods available at the Fair this year include:
Fried Kool Aid at the Fried Dough Concession inside Gate 9A
Deep Fried Whoopie Pies at Sugar Shakers on New England Avenue
Red Velvet Funnel Cake at the Apple Fritter Concession on West Road
Deep Fried Twinkies at the Fried Cheesecake Concession on Commonwealth Avenue
Fried Brownie Bits at The Coffee Break in the Food Court

The Big E Corn Challenge!
Delicious new concoctions from our concessionaries! One stipulation, they must be made from corn! Vote for your favorite. Details to come!

You’ll find… Red’s Tutti Frutti Popcorn at Red’s Red Apples, Corn Poppers at Osborne Mushroom Farm, Country Fried Shepherd’s Pie at EB’s in the Food Court and Corn Cake Pulled Pork Muffin at Scirrotto’s Cinnamon City behind the Stroh Building.

Have You Purchased Your Tickets Yet?
Advanced Discount Tickets are available! You can purchase them NOW through Sept. 14 at Big Y® World Class Markets®, online at or The Big E Box Office. Adults are $12 and Children (6-12) are $8.

You may also purchase an Advance Pay-One-Price Midway Magic Pass, which includes unlimited rides any one day of the Fair, Mon – Fri, for just $20. You also have the option to exchange for 24 ride coupons for Sat & Sun.

Value passes are also available at Big Y® World Class Markets®, online and at The Big E Box Office & Big E Gates NOW through Oct. 2. The passes are good all 17 days of the Fair, Adults, $40 and Children (6-12), $20.

That’s it for now! The clock is ticking and the gates will open before you know it! Are you ready…?