Slowly but surely,
"It worked beautifully, a goose-bump experience," said
Hauser said the crowds packing
Nor, she added, did the fear that car-centric
"The traffic plan worked flawlessly," Hauser said. "People got in and out easily."
Some more easily than others.
There were some complaints, particularly from older fairgoers, that shuttles from outlying parking areas discharged passengers at stations that required lengthy walks to attend musical performances or to see the fireworks.
Though business was steady, Brown said sales of bourbon chicken, crawfish etouffee and other specialties didn't quite match the receipts
Part of the reason, Brown reasoned, was the absence of foot traffic that Fair St. Louis typically attracts when the Cardinals play at
Brown along with other vendors said business was at its best at the top of Art Hill. "It was like a graveyard down there," he said, gesturing to the food sites Fair St. Louis positioned in a wooded glen to the east of the
But the Lakewide Concessions trailer at the top of the hill more than compensated for the losses below.
"I did every bit as good as I did at the Arch," said DeRamus, of
"We sold twice as much beer on Friday as we have during (three days) downtown," said volunteer coordinator
DeRamus acknowledged he was uncertain how the Fair, and his business, would fare in an expanse more than six times greater than that of the Arch grounds.
"All in all, circumstances being what they are and in a new location, we did pretty well," he said.
Hauser said Fair St. Louis representatives planned to spend the coming days "de-briefing" vendors, production companies and city officials on the
The nonprofit has said there is no decision on whether the Fair will be staged at
Be it at
"We have no choice," said Brown. "This is what we do."
The final vestiges of the 2014 festivities were meanwhile disappearing as the afternoon sun moved over the park.
Trash bins were mostly empty and the park grounds were tidy, but for a few traces of confetti dotting the sidewalks and grass.
Late morning found DeRamus and Brown and other vendors in the final phases of cleaning and moving their equipment as crews nearby dismantled performance stages.
Workers methodically retrieved and stored the NO SWIMMING signs that for three days had warned visitors from every accessible body of water.
There is still no swimming in
But the surest sign of the slow return to park normalcy was the visitors observing the end of Fair St. Louis from paddle boats dotting the
General assignment reporter
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