The stage is set for the State Fair, fewer acts at the Grandstand
Entertainment for the 2012 New York State Fair is all set, says Fair Director Dan O'Hara.
There are noticeably fewer acts this year at the Grandstand. The only sold out act is Jason Aldean, a country singer who will perform August 31st.
Other singers include Keith Urban, The Wanted, and the Rockstar Energy Drink UPROAR Festival. The rest of the acts include Larry the Cable Guy, Monster Truck Mix-Up, and NYS Championship Demolition Derby and Double Figure 8 Races.
"I would say right now, basically what we have is what we're going to present," Dan O'Hara said. "We do have discussions going with a couple of others but a lot of it's timing."
O'Hara says the challenges this year have been timing and costs.
"You have a lot of bands travelling to Europe," O'Hara said. "A lot of them we'd love to have here are very expensive and then it's difficult once you pay the guarantee you have to charge quite a bit."
In 2010, the State Fair paid Aerosmith a guaranteed $1 million and ticket prices were higher than usual.
"It's interesting because we paid them a million dollars but we sold all the $100 seats and the $90 seats, it's the upper tier seats that we didn't sell," O'Hara said.
O'Hara says the Fair recognizes the economy is a challenge and that it's a family friendly event. Over the past few years, they have worked to bring big music acts to Chevy Court which is free with fair admission.
"The Chevy Court stage we truly believe is the best free entertainment stage in the country," he said.
O'Hara says bigger crowds at Chevy Court brings up sales for vendors in that location, which the fair gets a cut of. He says since beefing up acts at Chevy Court, advance sale tickets have gone up with people buying more frequent fairgoer passes and coming to the fair more times over the course of the fair.
O'Hara says the reason for fewer grandstand concerts is unrelated to the ticket issues earlier this year.
This year's State Fair goes from August 23rd until September 3rd.