TN State Fair opens for another year - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

TN State Fair opens for another year


The Tennessee State Fair opened Friday for a new year of festivities and fun, but big questions remain about the property and the future of the event.

For the last few years, the biggest drama at the state fair was whether it would survive another year. This year it's all back - the rides, the food, the giant pumpkins and even Traditional Championship Wrestling.

A few years ago, Mayor Karl Dean gave the fairgrounds its own body-slam, saying he wanted to redevelop the fairgrounds property. But the public said no, and a recent city legal opinion said the fair and everything else at the fairgrounds property stays, unless the voters say otherwise.

There's a renewed interest in seeing that the traditions, including agriculture, are kept alive.

So this year, the local fair board, a new state fair board and a non-profit group are collaborating to bring back the glory days.

Part of that history is the tradition of wrestling, which was a popular attraction at the fairgrounds from the 1960s through the '90s.

"I'm from here, and I love this area. This building has so much history. Back in the '90s, I was part of a pretty big tag team called PG-13, and we drew a lot of money in this building," said TCW wrestler Cerebus.

As for whether the state fair can draw enough money to keep operating, state officials got involved when it looked like the fair was going to close down a few years ago.

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