I had anticipated a full day of fair fun with the family at The State Fair of Texas this past Friday with fried food, pictures with Big Tex, rides, and games in the midway. Little did I know it would be a historical day for the fair.
On our way down to the fair, Hallie’s friend, who knew we were going to the fair, called her to say Big Tex was on fire. I really thought she was kidding and it was all a big joke. I mean, why in the world would Big Tex be on fire? Just Big Tex. Weird.
I went to my favorite news source, as of late. Facebook.
Sure enough, there were several of my friends making comments about Big Tex on fire.
I jumped on Instagram wondering if we might actually get to see a picture of it. My fellow Dallas Moms Blog contributor, Jenny, who blogs at Conscientious Confusion, was already at the fair and she was clicking away on her phone. She watched it all take place.
Such an awesome picture, but one I absolutely can NOT take credit for. This was all Jenny, she was just nice enough to let me use it.
By the time we got to the fair, and made our way over to Big Tex, there wasn’t much left of him. He had burned down to his metal frame and aside from his hands, that were spared by the fire, he was unrecognizable.
We watched long enough for the men to climb up to hook up the crane to Big Tex. It was obvious he was coming down.
We made our way in to the car show, but we came out just in time.
Big Tex had been taken down and was ready to be taken out of the park. Who knew it would be such a production.
He was escorted by motorcycle police and with all of the spectators on the sides of his pathway, it seemed just like a funeral procession. I actually felt lucky we had front row seats since so many people had gathered, including news crews.
That big cowboy really did ride away. Too bad it was on a flat bed trailer.
It’s a little bit surprising, but there were a lot of sad people who watched him be carried off. I guess it’s because Big Tex is such a Dallas icon and when one thinks of The State Fair of Texas, Big Tex and the Ferris Wheel probably come to mind first.
Did you know that Big Tex was bought for $750 in 1951?? 1952 was the first year he stood welcoming fair attendees. I can only imagine what he would be bought for today.
This year was Big Tex’s 60th birthday, but he won’t be remembered for turning 60. He’ll be remembered this year for burning and coming down.
I’ve heard he’ll be back next year and I’m so glad to hear it. We’ll be back to get our obligatory family picture with Big Tex. You have to do it when you go to the fair, right??
I guess I should probably tell you my mom is an editor for the Herald Democrat. I guess that doesn’t make this so cool anymore. Ha!