Big Tex is back and more fire-resistant than ever
Big Tex at the State Fair of Texas in Dallas has had an extreme makeover. This was not cosmetic surgery, but reconstructive surgery after a fire caused by an electrical short destroyed most of the 60-year-old icon in the final days of the fair last year.
It's hard to say if Tex looks better or worse, he just looks different with his exaggerated, rugged features. Both iterations have a face better suited for radio than being the best known AARP-eligible greeter in the state.
Big Tex has always been a tall drink of water, but the replacement version grew by three feet to 55 feet. Everything is bigger about New Tex, including a small but shapely tush that helps him fill out his 27-foot (waist) by 20-foot (inseam) fire-resistant denim jeans.
After a short stint as a Santa Claus in Kerens, Texas, Big Tex joined the state fair as a cowboy in 1951, and despite a few changes over the years, worked continuously for three weeks a year until the fire on Oct. 19, 2012. The original cost $750; the new Big Tex was built in San Antonio and Boerne for $500,000.
The State Fair of Texas has roots stretching back to 1886 and continues to fill Fair Park in Dallas with three weeks of entertainment and fried food. This year's fair continues through Oct. 20. For more information, go to www.bigtex.com.
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