Troxler said he and State Fair management chose to offer the contract to Powers for 2009 based on the company’s performance at the past three State Fairs, as well as the financial benefit to the state. State regulations allow the State Fair to enter into a one-year contract with a carnival company without taking bids.
“We’ve got a carnival contract that’s as good as, or better than, any state fair in the country,” Troxler said.
State Fair Manager Wesley Wyatt and Les Powers, president of Powers Great American Midways, signed the contract today (Dec. 11).
The Pender County-based company will pay the state $5.50 for each person who buys an admission ticket to the 2009 State Fair, the same base rate as this year. The contract will again include a provision that allows Powers to lower its payment 20 cents per person by bringing in two rides that are not more than 24 months old and have never played the N.C. State Fair before. The company qualified for the discount this year by bringing in several new rides, including the Mind Blaster and Vortex.
The N.C. State Fair is a self-supporting entity that does not rely on legislative appropriations to operate. The State Fair uses the carnival company’s payment and other revenues for fairgrounds operations and improvements.
The 2009 State Fair will take place Oct. 15-25.