Changes at the Fair, including what you won't see in the bathroom

The new wine tent at the Fairgrounds / photo: Alex Dunbar

You'll see a few changes at the New York State Fair this year, but one of the most obvious might be what you don't see.

There will no longer be bathroom attendants at the Fairgrounds. Fair Director Dan O'Hara says officials got a lot of feedback from people who said having the attendants there made them uncomfortable.

"To some people it would feel uncomfortable - not really for me - but most people, they really get worried about it," said fairgoer Marshane Green.

Bathroom attendants helped to keep order in the restrooms, as well as cleaning up. O'Hara says crews will be on hand to clean each bathroom regularly.

There are some other changes as well. The wine tent has another new location. This time around, it will be located by the Horticulture Building. O'Hara says this is a much more high traffic area than the location for the last three years, which was extremely unpopular . The wine tent will have more room for the wineries, and will have the ability to open up, making it more like the wine court areas of the past. Both wineries and fairgoers had expressed frustrations about the old location being awkward and remote so the return to a more central location had crews smiling as they set up.

"People tend to like their wine and then go to Chevy Court for a concert or the Grandstand. so to have it up towards this closer end of the fairgrounds is better," said Jason Merritt of Merritt Wineries.

There will be also 9/11 memorial at the fair this year. "New York Remembers" will allow fairgoers to see two vehicles, a Port Authority SUV and an FBI van, that were damaged in the attacks, along with a piece of an antenna from the top of the World Trade Center. It will be on display throughout the entire length of the Fair.

"I think for the public, seeing these things for the first time, it will have tremendous impact. the objects are really touchstones to September 11th and what happened that day and each object has a story," said curator Mark Schaming.

With just two days until the Fair opens, crews are hard at work putting up the Grandstand stage. O'Hara says safety is the top priority during the work. He also points out the stage here is much different than the one that collapsed in Indiana . The one here is made out of steel . It can withstand winds up to 120 miles per hour. The stage in Indiana was made out of aluminum.

The Fair is also debuting a smart phone friendly website that will allow guests to build their own itinerary for their day at the fairgrounds. The midway rides will also get a high tech addition. A "funcard" system will allow an electronic bar coded card to be used on rides instead of individual tickets.

The gates open for the Fair on Thursday morning. What is your first stop at the Fairgrounds? Do you agree with the changes this year? Leave a comment below to share your thoughts.