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Dixie Classic Fair name change put on hold by W-S City Council

Dixie Classic Fair name change put on hold by W-S City Council
September 12
00:00 2019

During the Community Development/Housing/General Government Committee meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 10, members of the Winston-Salem City Council decided to hold off on changing the name of the Dixie Classic Fair but did approve a resolution that will allow for a name change to go in effect next year.

Talks about the name change were ignited earlier this year when Bishop Sir Walter Mack, senior pastor at Union Baptist Church, called for the term “Dixie” to be removed from the name of the city’s fair. During a press conference at the church, and a committee meeting in April, Mack and more than a dozen other local clergy called the term derogatory.

In response to the call for the name change, less than a month later, a public forum was held to let residents share their thoughts on what should be done. As a result, city officials received thousands of comments including 11,000 emails from people both for and against the name change.

Although most of the responses were against the name change, during a full council meeting on Monday, Aug. 19, members of city council voted 5-2 to change the name and approved a separate motion to begin the process for picking a new name.

Since that time, city staff has read through hundreds of suggestions submitted by an online survey, during the public forum held in May, and a citizen feedback phone line that was set up to take suggestions. Suggestions for the name included: Twin City Classic Fair, Triad Classic Fair, Camel City Fair, “The” Classic Fair, Piedmont Classic Fair, Winston-Salem Regional Fair, Carolina AgriClassic and countless others.

During the committee meeting on Tuesday evening, Councilmember Dan Besse suggested that the renaming be held in committee for more discussion. He, however, made a motion to approve the name change for the fair in 2020.

The motion passed 3-0 and is expected to be presented before the full council on Monday, Sept. 16.

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Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

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