Rector has to downsize carnival during Labor Day celebrations - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Rector has to downsize carnival during Labor Day celebrations

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RECTOR, AR (KAIT) -

The city of Rector is known for their Labor Day celebrations where thousands of people, from all over the area, attend and enjoy the festivities.

Many in Region 8 know that if it’s Labor Day, you definitely want to be in Rector, but several are disappointed with the carnival rides this year.

According to the board members of the Woodland Heights Cemetery, they usually have a big carnival that will come a week before Labor Day.

Because so many carnivals were already booked in larger cities across the country for the week leading up to Labor Day, they have had to downsize and get any carnival available to come down since they only need one for a day and a half.

Residents told Region 8 News that in comparison to last year, the rides are a lot smaller and more suited for a very young audience.

“The kids want to ride,” said Cheri Boyd, a board member of the Woodland Heights Cemetery. “It is the only time we have rides here. So yes the children are a little disappointed but we have tried to get a larger one but they just would not come.”

Saturday, a malfunction of a ride at the Delta Fair in Memphis sent several to the hospital with injuries after it stopped 30 feet in the air and the operator pressed the button to release the safety belts.

Now, with many carnivals going on during the Labor Day holiday, some may wonder about the safety of some rides.

However, some residents in Rector said they are not concerned about the carnival even after the ride malfunction at the Delta fair.

“There are always accidents,” said Boyd. “Every fair you check or carnival, there have been accidents. That’s just part of it.”

Sunday, the carnival crew was hard at work putting a variety of rides together following all the rules and regulations.

An Arkansas State Amusement Ride inspector was also present during the set-up.

Several residents said even if they are disappointed in the size of the carnival, they are still confident that safety is the carnival company's main priority.

“Our folks who engineer and who hire the companies have safety as a primary concern also so we are certain that they have gone over all of those safety rules with the carnival folks,” said Jane Gatewood, a citizen of Rector.

Even though the carnival experience may not be as big as it has been in the past, several residents feel that thousands will still attend the Rector Labor Day Picnic and will still have great time.

Labor Day in Rector will start Monday with a parade at 9 a.m. and will continue with several events throughout the day at the Rector Memorial Park.

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