Alameda County Fair organizers close gates hours before firework show

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The early bird gets the worm this Fourth of July at the Alameda County Fair as officials plan to close the entrance gates hours before the fireworks show begins. (KGO-TV)

The early bird got the worm this Fourth of July at the Alameda County Fair as officials closed the entrance gates hours before the fireworks show was scheduled to begin.

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This year, those who arrive early were guaranteed a spot at the fireworks show.

"We want to allow everyone to have a great time from start to finish," said fair spokesperson Angel Moore.

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The gates closed at 6 p.m., even though the fireworks weren't set to start until 9:30 p.m. The idea was to keep the crowds down.

"Not wait in a line a tremendous amount of time to get on rides, to get food, but we also want to make sure when you're exiting, because we know you all have to get back to work the next day that you can exit quickly," Moore said.

The issue is that in the past, fireworks night at the fair just gets too crowded. That means long lines for the rides and concessions and long waits as long as two hours to get out of the parking lot once the fireworks are over.


Rashad Hayes and his family have been there, but are not returning this year.

"It was terrible. Took a long time traveling," said Hayes, who got stuck in the post-fireworks gridlock several years ago. "I think to get to the freeway it was an hour just to get out of the parking lot. Not worth it."

Click here for more information on the fair and the fireworks show.

Want to know what the weather will be like? Click here for the latest AccuWeather forecast.

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