Fair Park

Fair Park

Dallas Fair Park is a convert|277|acre|km2|2|sing=on|lk=on recreational and educational complex located in Dallas, Texas (USA). The complex is registered as a National Historic Landmark and is home to nine museums, six performance facilities, a lagoon, and the largest Ferris wheel in North America. Many of the buildings on the complex were constructed for the Texas Centennial Exposition in 1936 which drew over six million visitors. Most of the buildings built for the exposition still survive and Fair Park is recognized as a significant example of art deco architecture.Infobox nrhp
name = Texas Centennial Exposition Buildings (1936--1937)
nrhp_type =nhl

caption =
location = Bounded by Texas and Pacific RR, Pennsylvania, Second, and Parry Aves
Dallas, Texas
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designated=September 24, 1986
added = September 24, 1986
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State Fair of Texas

The complex's signature event is the annual State Fair of Texas, the largest state fair in the United States, which has been held at the location since 1886. The fair currently lasts 24 days and begins in the last Friday in September and runs to the third Sunday in October. The movie musical "State Fair" was filmed in Fair Park in 1961.

Hall of State

Built in 1936 at the astronomical (especially during the Great Depression) price of US$1.2 million, the building was the most expensive per unit area of any structure built in Texas. It was designed for the centennial of the Republic of Texas by architect George Dahl in the Beaux-Arts style and is considered one of the most representative examples of art deco architecture in Texas. The Hall of State is the culmination of the convert|1500|ft|m|-1|sing=on long Esplanade of State which is flanked by six exhibition pavilions and features a long reflecting pool. It was built using Texas limestone and features many memorials to many of the heroes of Texas history.

The Cotton Bowl

The Cotton Bowl is played each year at the stadium of the same name in the center of the park. In addition, the "Red River Shootout" game between the University of Texas and the University of Oklahoma and the "Al Lipscomb State Fair Classic" game between Grambling State University (Louisiana) and Prairie View A&M University are held there during the State Fair. This stadium was home to the Dallas Cowboys from 1960 to 1970, when they built a new stadium in Irving. In 2004, the Cowboys announced that they were considering moving back to Fair Park and replacing the Cotton Bowl with a new stadium. Talks with the city of Dallas and Dallas County came to a halt, however, and the Cowboys have now decided to build a new stadium located within the city of Arlington.

Big Tex

Big Tex is the convert|49|ft|m|0|sing=on tall statue of a cowboy that is often referred to as the face of the State Fair of Texas. He was originally designed as a Santa Claus statue in Kerens, Texas for the 1949 holiday season. The novelty wore off by the following year and State Fair President R.L. Thornton purchased the statue for 750 dollars. He then hired Dallas artist Jack Bridges to turn it into a cowboy. He made his debut at the 1952 fair, wearing a 75 gallon hat and size 70 boots which raised his stature to convert|52|ft|m|0. Big Tex has also been added with a feature that allows him to talk to the visitors of the Fair. His vocabulary was recently updated to curve to the demands of the modern day.

SuperPages.com Center

The SuperPages.com Center, an amphitheater that hosts large concerts, is also located on the grounds of Fair Park.


Located on the Fair Park grounds is WRR, Dallas's city-owned classical music broadcaster, which has the distinction of being the oldest commercially operated radio station in Texas, and second oldest in the United States.

North Texas Irish Festival

One of the largest Irish festivals in the country, referred to locally as NTIF, takes place the first weekend in March each year since 1983.

Formula 1

Motorsport venue
Name = Dallas Grand Prix Circuit | Location = Fair Park, Dallas, Texas, USA
Time = GMT -6

Events = 1984 United States Grand Prix
Miles_first = True
Length_km = 3.901
Length_mi = 2.424
Turns = 21
Record_time = 1:45.353, 133.300 km/h
Record_driver = Niki Lauda
Record_team = McLaren
Record_year = 1984
In July, 1984, Fair Park was converted into a Formula One circuit for a weekend to host the 1984 United States Grand Prix, also referred to as the "Dallas Grand Prix." The event was conceived as a way to demonstrate Dallas' status as a "world-class city" and overcame 100-degree heat, a disintegrating track surface and weekend-long rumors of its cancellation. The interesting tight and twisty course was laid out with help from Chris Pook, organizer of the United States Grand Prix West in Long Beach, California, and featured two hairpin curves. The event was attended by former US President Jimmy Carter and featured Larry Hagman ('J.R.' from the television series, "Dallas") waving the green flag to start the race's parade lap. The circuit is no longer operational.

New housing

As of mid 2006, the old neighborhoods just north of Fair Park such as J.D. Herndon's subdivision & the Richard Lagow Estates have begun to be revitalized with new housing. A good example of this can be seen across from the Northern ticket entrance to the State Fair on Fletcher Street where new duplexes are being built .

External links

* [http://www.dallascityhall.com City of Dallas] - [http://www.dallascityhall.com/html/fair_park_information.html Fair Park]
* [http://www.fairpark.org Friends of Fair Park]
* [http://www.fairpark.org/Index.cfm?FuseAction=Page&PageID=1000005 Fair Park Calendar of Events]
* [http://www.yourworld360.com/master/USA/Texas/Dallas/index.html 360-degree images of Fair Park]


* Rob Walker (October, 1984). "1st Dallas Grand Prix: Cool Keke". "Road & Track", 178-182.
* Mike S. Lang (1992). "Grand Prix!: Race-by-race account of Formula 1 World Championship motor racing. Volume 4: 1981 to 1984". Haynes Publishing Group. ISBN 0-85429-733-2

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