PLEASANTON (KPIX 5) – After a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, the Alameda County Fair makes its return starting Friday.

The fair, which normally takes place in summer, will celebrate all things fall through Halloween.

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On Thursday, crews were busy conducting finishing touches to the rollercoaster, along with stocking last-minute items and prizes at the game booths.

“Here we are! We are glad we are back,” said Trudy West.

The carnival employee told KPIX 5 that it’s nice to be working again after a pandemic brought things to a halt. “We were all off a whole year, we didn’t do anything.  I’m from Texas, so we just kind of sat around and gained weight,” West said.

Visitors can expect traditional fair favorites such as the carnival rides and fair food, along with live concerts. Among the new attractions, the American Tractor Museum has an exhibit, bringing back a piece of Pleasanton history.

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Angel Moore with the Alameda County Fairgrounds told KPIX 5 that fair guests 2 and older are required to wear a mask indoors, regardless of vaccination status. Masks are optional outdoors.

Meanwhile, fair employees are being asked to complete daily health assessments.

Several months ago, the fairgrounds was converted to a mass COVID-19 vaccination site.

“It was the vaccination headquarters. And it is honestly, when I think about it, it brings tears to my eyes,” Moore recalled. “And so, it is just amazing where we’ve been and where we’ve come. We are just thrilled to be able to bring our community back together.”

Even with wet weather in the forecast, Moore said the fall edition of the fair is full speed ahead, rain or shine.

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Tickets will be sold by the day and capacity will be limited to enhance safety. Purchasing information can be found by visiting the fairgrounds website.

Juliette Goodrich