High food prices putting a damper on SETX State Fair fun

Susan S. Johnson

Some fair goers said they had to get creative, by eating before they arrived, to make sure they did not break their budgets.

BEAUMONT, Texas — There is an abundance of life at Ford Park as community members enjoy the food and fun the South Texas State Fair YMBL has to offer.

However, some fair goers are having a hard time enjoying the festivities amid high food prices. Many attendees said they feel like they are paying more for food, and it has them questioning why the prices seemed to have increased.

“What [are] we paying $35 for a burger for,” Caidyn Lawrence, fair attendee, said.

Lawrence and her friends said the high food prices are hitting their pockets hard. Some fair goers said the prices mimic those of actual restaurants and sometimes even surpass them.

“Bought me a snow cone for $6, like, I could go to Mabel’s for five,” Keri Wison, fair attendee, said. “And then, for crawfish it’s $15. Let me just go to K Asian for all of that.”

Related: 2022 South Texas State Fair: Events, entertainment, schedule and information

Some fair goers said they had to get creative to make sure they did not break their budgets. For some, this meant enjoying fair festivities but not fair food.

“Before we came to the fair today, we decided that we [were going to] eat due to, you know, the prices and how they basically increased,” Dennis Wilson, attendee, said.

Wilson said the high prices are making it hard for his family and others to truly enjoy the unique experiences and tastes of the fair.

“It’s kind of hard though, when you’re at the fair, and you’re smelling the food, and you’re thirsty, you want something to drink,” Wilson said.

While attendees said they are trying to enjoy the festivities, the cost of fun is burning a hole in their wallets.

“Came here with probably 100 and something bucks yesterday and I just, I blew it all,” Lane Brinson, fair attendee, said. “I was broke after yesterday.”

Many like Brinson said they understand that vendors need to make money, so they are determined to have fun.

“Of course, all these rides, it’s fun out here. Great environment out here,” Brayton Tregre, attendee, said.

Organizers of the fair said they are doing their best to keep admission prices down and want to remind everyone that parking is free. The fair continues through Sunday, April 3.

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