How weather impacts attendance at the Big E

Temperatures for the start of the Big E have already been warmer than the entire Big E of 2016.

WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – It wasn’t the brightest start to Saturday, but that didn’t stop thousands from returning for the second day of the Big E.

After more than 70-thousand people showed up on a warm and bright Friday, Saturday’s weather seemed ideal for bringing even more visitors.

“It’s muggy, but it’s reasonable to be out and enjoy it and walk around before the fall weather comes and it kind of makes you stay inside a little more,” said Matthew Welch from West Springfield.

It turns out there’s a certain type of weather that draws the most crowds

“When it’s sunny and cool out,” said Chris Clark from Orange.

According to Noreen Tassinari, Director of Marketing for the Big E, it’s a combination of bright sky and cooler temperatures that can help bring record breaking attendance.

But as we know…the weather for the Big E isn’t always like that.

If rain arrives on the middle weekend of the fair, usually the busiest weekend, attendance can drop by as much as 80 percent!

“We can get upwards of 150-thousand people on a sunny Saturday, usually it’s the middle Saturday or Sunday of the Big E, but if it’s raining, depending on how hard it’s raining and what the forecast is as well, we could have as few as 30-thousand people on a day like that,” said Tassinari.

During last year’s Big E there was measurable rain on 6 days of the 17 day fair, and high temperatures averaged near 71 degrees for the fair as a whole.

This year’s fair may end up averaging warmer than last years. In fact temperatures at this year’s Big E already have been higher than the warmest day during the entire Big E last year.

But, there is such thing as too much heat for fair-goers.

“If it were upper 80s or low 90s, no thank you…I just don’t want to be close to all the crowds and sticky,” said Michelle Moosbrugger from Springfield.

So far no sign of THAT type of heat.