Star gives fair a blow job

Dateline: Mon 06 Aug 2012

http://www.indystar.com/article/20120802/NEWS/208030316/Indiana-State-Fair-Come-animal-barns-4-H-projects-stay-food-entertainment

Friday's front-page story on the Indiana State Fair was over-the-top public relations; it painted a pretty, even sugary (or deep-fat-fried) picture of the event, while conceding last year's tragedy, and then went on to exhort readers to "embrace the fair once again" in flowery prose:

"An authentic summertime escape. An authentic glimpse into a way of life that is far removed from 38th Street. An authentic exercise in eating -- the good, the bad and the deep-fried.

"Hoosiers, this is is your Indiana State Fair. And it's back. Let's have a little fun."

I love me some Dan McFeely, who wrote this story; he's one of the few on staff who probably really believes every word penned, good-hearted soul that he is.

But my reaction was pffft, which is why I appreciated the Indianapolis Business Journal, which cut to the chase in its fair coverge, reminding readers that ticket prices are up (a first since 2006) to $10 to walk into the joint, and an added new fee of $5 for parking. Pfft and then some.

All this, in an effort to make up for lost revenue from last year, when the fact that people were killed (because of the bone-headed fair leadership's poor decision-making) led to a drop in subsequent attendance.

The state's largest newspaper should not be doing blow jobs for the Indiana State Fair.

It's embarrassing.

And no doubt, all that free ink won't do a tiny bit of good. Many of us are avoiding the fair not just because of heat and prices, but because Andre Lacy at the fair board and the all the King's Men have preserved the status quo (and a best friend's job).

That's a story the Star could editorialize about. But it won't happen. It's much easier to write cheer-leading scholock than produce provocative and critical thinking.

 

Comments

hendy [Member] said:

Are you practicing writing headlines for the Huffington Post?

The feelgood piece probably arrived easily, as TheStar is used to fluffy, advertorial pieces. Rah! Rah!

I wonder if there's a lot of lithium in their water supply. Did you know that there is a place called Lithium Springs in Paoli? Must be the only reason people live there.

2012-08-06 08:55:06

Lynn Hopper [unverified] said:

Come, now, let's not be dissing Paoli! I'm not from there, but I hear it's a nice little place. Is that the town that has a circle in the center instead of a square...oh, wait, that's another place...

2012-08-06 13:19:12

Whitebeard [unverified] said:

My blog headline would be that The Star is giving Indianapolis and Central mass lobotomies. Funny idea about the lithium in water for reporters, Hendy. I was kinda thinking maybe some dissolved Ecstacy pills.

Ruth, you mentioned $15 just to get parked and to get in. For me, add another $50 - because that is what the State Fair charges to allow physically disabled people (like me) to drive their little electric mobility scooters around! So, with admission and using a mobility scooter, I'm out $65. Even before I've eaten one ear of roasted shrunken corn.

I couldn't afford to go to the State Fair if I wanted to because I am disabled and "financially challenged."

That article is the same genre of drivel we've come to expect from The Star. How about a bit of reality for a change?

2012-08-06 21:15:12

Tell The Truth [Member] said:

Paoli, West Baden, Fr. Lick, et al have Pluto water. It smells like hell. Reportedly has medicinal value. Pshaw. Same sulphur smell as that well on 116th St. in Carmel. Folks line up with their water jugs because they're told to or because of tradition. It's lousy-tsting.

But I digress: you're right about the State Fair. Ten bucks to get in? That's 15 more than I'll spend. It takes a lot of nerve to up the price a year after they effed up a concert and folks died.

I'm yelling "attagirl, Ruthie!" at your spot-on critique. Cheri Daniels's best friend got and kept this job for that reason only.

If you want a striking piece of journalism regarding the State Fair disaster, read Evan West's article in this month's Indianapolis Monthly. Sparkling. Finely-written. Sharp. And haunting. And I'd forgotten a side benefit of the fiscal settlements offered up:

America's most-patronizing, pandering Attorney General didn't bat an eye when a same-gender partner of one of the deceased, asked for and was given a full settlement. Because their domestic partnership was registered in their home state (one state west). Zoeller recognized a losing argument. So we got, in one story:

Shock. Awe. Tragedy. Pathos. Regret. Remorse. State government exposed for being only marginally "in" the concert business. And political repercussions, intended and otherwise.

Beat that with a stick, IndyStar.





2012-08-06 21:43:02

hendy [Member] said:

Hey: use this to get in cheap. It goes to a $5 Fair admission price ostensibly sponsored by the BMV: http://click.communications.bmv.in.gov/?ju=fe35157575660574771171&ls=fdfb1d717667007c76127574&m=fef21073726d02&l=fe891676706c037577&s=fe3012717363047f721472&jb=ffcf14&t=

2012-08-07 08:35:18

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