I’ve been fortunate enough to find myself on all the right email lists lately. I guess being the staff photographer and contributing reporter for Dallas Art News has it perks. Last week I received an invitation to see Big Tex get fitted for his new Dickies shirt. How could I refuse such an offer.
Had I know that I would be sweating to death in less than fifteen minutes, I might have reconsidered. If I remember correctly, it was also blistering hot last year when I first saw Big Tex set into place for the 2010 State Fair of Texas in September.
Click here to see Big Tex Goes Up at the State Fair of Texas. There is an image gallery at the bottom.
Big Tex has always been the highlight of my State Fair of Texas experience. I enjoy watching the crowds of people, both small and large groups, huddle together to get that perfect shot with Big Tex. I also enjoy the reactions when Big Tex starts talking to the children.
It is with this spirit that I attend these special Big Tex events. Not only do I get to take great photos of the big man, but I even get close enough to touch him. At first I considered being respectful of Big Tex and treat him like a work of art, but who could resist the urge to touch a legend like Big Tex. Certainly not me.
This year Big Tex received a red, white and blue shirt to replace last year’s yellow and blue shirt. The new shirt was voted for on Dickies Facebook page. Not only did Dickies’ Facebook friend select the color, they also selected the style of the shirt.
The whole fitting process takes about twenty to thirty minutes. I’m sure it could be done faster without all the media hanging around. Just imagine if you were followed by a camera crew while you did your job. Creepy, huh.
I was told that Big Tex gets a new shirt every three years. I also heard the shirt was built to withstand the heat, wind and rain.
I kept asking what they did with last year’s shirt, but nobody seemed to have an answer. I can only image a really large closet somewhere in Fair Park with Big Tex’s old shirts.