Fair Park: A Rant

Get ready for a rant, because today I am going to get irrationally angry over something I have no control over, and I may get a little mean about it. Why am I dedicating an entire post to this? Because it is that infuriating, and to anyone who has visited this place, or lives in the Dallas area, hopefully you can nod your head and think to yourself, “Man, she is so right.”  and then go immediately back to something more pressing and relevant than this post. Today folks we are going to talk about the trash dump that is Fair Park and why it is my least favorite place on earth. I am still currently riding the anger high I received when going to see DMB at Gexa Energy Pavilion (a concert venue at Fair Park) last Friday, and like I have always been taught, I am going to put that negative energy to good use…by writing a nonsensical post about why it is the worst.

  • Okay just look at it

Garbage Town

Fair Park looks like what 1950’s Disney imagined the future to look like in 2030. All around you you will find decommissioned monorails, large monuments that seem to fit no purpose, or seem to be dedicated to anything particular, as well as mall parking lot carnival rides that are only dusted off for the State Fair in the fall. It also appears as if they had been going for something similar to the Washington monument, and then quickly abandoned it so they could return to their Epcot theme.


Also, I don’t know a lot about what it takes to maintain architecture and the upkeep of buildings, but do know that is not ideal for a place to look as if we are in the first ten years of a zombie apocalypse and the overgrowth of vines and shrubbery is imminent. While I’ll forgive the fact that it is overcast in this photo, thus making it look even more ominous, but can someone just load a few spray bottles with Clorox and bleach up those weathered marks? The fountain out front also appears to be just as uninspired as the buildings around it, and looks more like a result of faulty plumbing then a spectacular water show.

  • The Parking Lot

I already know that if I end up in hell, it is going to be an eternity of the Fair Park parking lot on a hot afternoon. The parking lot is a different breed of hell depending on what you are there for. A concert? All entrances, except for the LAST (which if you miss you are immediately put onto a bridge and headed towards the highway), are used for VIP parking or weirdos who always have more than $20 in cash on them at all times. The traffic directing the parking is often dictated by an overzealous man with a safety vest and a whistle, and if you even think about turning your blinker on into the VIP section, that guy will publicly humiliate you until you either show him your pass, or throw a hundred dollar bill in his face. The unpaid section for parking for the rest of us plebeians, is often not patrolled by anyone, and usually ends up into Mad Max anarchy style free for fall as we all attempt to create our own lines and merge mindlessly into one another. Now if you’re there for a race, go ahead and note that your warm and cool down is going to be your commute from the car to the venue, and vice versa. My first half marathon ended at Fair Park, and I had to be propped up by Jake and limp the whole HALF MILE back to car once the race was over. What a great time everyone had. Last February my Dad and I ran the Hot Chocolate 15k there, and he experienced his own fun relishing in agonizing pain while venturing back to the car.

Leaving the venue is especially fun, because then the luxury of VIP parking is abandoned entirely and everyone attempts to leave the venue as if we all just learned that the world was ending in 15 minutes. Leaving after a race isn’t that bad, but leaving after a concert, especially after a concert like DMB where the attendees are normally a little…lifted, is always an enjoyable experience. You may be kind and give someone the right-away into the exit line, but oh what’s that? The driver appears to be staring aimlessly into the sky while their clown car full of passengers are all interpretive dancing to some sort of ambient EDM hybrid. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you may encounter the overly aggressive driver who wouldn’t extend you the courtesy of entering the exit line even if you offered to pay off their student loan debt and do their laundry for the next twenty years. They will intentionally inch their car up bumper to bumper with the car on front of them and then shoot a glance at you that seems to read “I drive an SUV even though a I am in two person household, and I am better than you.”  The only way to make it through is to make sure you packed snacks and have Netflix on your phone, because you probably spend about as much time as you did at the concert, as you will trying to leave it.

Now I realize this is a rather scathing review of this place, but it does hold some sentimental value to me. I finished my first half marathon there, I attended a Kelly Clarkson concert there once I was 15 where she pointed and laughed at me (another story for another time), and I once made the mistake of spending $14 on a margarita that came in giant cup shaped like a guitar WHILE wearing a Tom DeLonge mask in front of other people.

killing it

What I’m saying is that we all make mistakes, and Fair Park could rectify it’s mistakes by demolishing altogether and building something completely new on top it. Your move, Fair Park. Your move.


One thought on “Fair Park: A Rant

  1. coffeegrounded

    Yes, it’s in bad disarray, but if they really wanted to do the right thing they would renovate it and bring it back up to it’s early glory days. There’s so much history embedded into the psyche of that area of Dallas. Let’s revitalize an area of Dallas that has seen its better days. Fix up Fair Park and other great changes will follow. Urban planners know this, and yet the City of Dallas keeps neglecting a responsibility, a valuable resource that could only benefit all of us, visitors and landowners, alike.



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