On Friday, “Big Tex”, the adored giant cowboy, turned into a towering inferno burning to the ground right before the eyes of visitors to the State Fair of Texas. At least for another year, we will no longer here those welcoming words, “Howdy, Folks!” coming from the 52 foot high icon. As we understand it, State Fair officials indicate Big Tex will return in time for the 2013 Fair.
In case you were not privy to our beloved Big Tex, in October 1952, “Big Tex”, the adored giant cowboy, became the official symbol for the State Fair of Texas. This year he was 60 years old.
Previous to becoming Big Tex, he was Santa Claus originally built in 1949 and sold to the State Fair of Texas for $750 in 1951. In October 1952, he was unveiled as Big Tex. At the young age of 60, Big Tex has undergone a few nips and tucks over the years to keep him in prime condition. Including, but not limited to having his insides redone with steel frames in 1997.
After the demise of Big Tex this Friday, October 19th, he was lowered by crane onto flatbed trucks and respectfully covered by a huge canvas. Almost as if he was in a body bag. The scene was very emotional with many snapping photos, some crying from the fond memories and simply the drama of it all.
#BigTex is still trending on Twitter and Mayor of Dallas, Mike Rawlings, was no exception. Mayor Rawlings tweeted, “Dallas is about Big Things and #BigTex was symbolic of that.” He continued, “We will rebuild Big Tex bigger and better for the 21st Century.”
What are your thoughts on Big Tex? We would love to hear your stories. Were you there? Did you witness this tragic event? Please do share respectfully so in the comment section below.