The 2010 L.A. County Fair concluded its 88th anniversary edition Oct. 3 with attendance of 1,374,673 and a plethora of programs to benefit the surrounding communities and Fairguests.
The Fair expanded blood drives, a tradition that began in 2008, resulting in donations of nearly 300 pints of blood. The American Red Cross hosted two such drives, one pre-Fair in August and one during the Fair. The drives were held at the Sheraton Fairplex Hotel and donors received free admission to return to the Fair. USC and City of Hope also set up centers for donations during the Fair.
Ralphs Food Drive Fridays continued with donations of 82,718 cans over five Fridays. The canned food was donated to Los Angeles Regional Food Bank, and marked the largest single-event contribution to the organization. The program increased donations by nearly 23,000 cans in its second year.
FairKids Discovery Club Field Trips hosted 116,000 youngsters and chaperones, an increase of 8,000 over 2009. Children came from schools throughout Southern California and enjoyed a day of learning at the Fair, at no cost to them or their schools. The Big Yellow Bus program raised $90,000 and provided transportation for schools as needed.
Eighteen communities were honored during the Fair allowing cities to present their own business expo, honor their citiesí community heroes and march in a parade. Admission to the Fair for residents on their respective community days was just $5 before 5 p.m. allowing for more city pride and participation. A number of colleges were saluted with discount admission for students, faculty and alumni.
Dodger Day brought out Dodgers greats to greet fans and also provided more than $10,000 from admission to ThinkCure, the Dodgersí charity of choice. Weekend for Heroes, observed Sept. 10 to 12, brought in nearly $8,500 for USA Cares and LIVESTRONG Day, Oct. 2, raised $11,000 for cancer research. Univisionís Book Drive received 500 books from generous Fairguests, Sept. 19.
The attraction Our Body: The Universe Within complemented the Fairís commitment to education bringing the exhibit to a venue outside of a museum for the first time. More than 75,000 guests experienced the fascinating presentation on human anatomy.
The L.A. County Fair is committed to education and giving back to the communities it serves while raising the bar to achieve its goals. Plans are underway for the 2011 L.A. County Fair tentatively scheduled Sept. 3 to Oct. 2, and expanding programming to continue and enhance the long-standing tradition.
Visit fairplex.com for more information.