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Dads Get In Free For Father's Day At The Alameda County Fair

PLEASANTON (KPIX 5) -- Thousands of dads spent the day with their families this Father's Day at the Alameda County Fair, which just opened on Friday.

Families at the fair told KPIX 5 it's the perfect place to spend the day because everyone can enjoy it.

One of the popular attractions Sunday was the midway, where thousands of people rode on the rides and tried their luck at the carnival games. The competition between father and son was fierce.

"I'm going to win anyways," said Kimahni Mendes while taunting his father, Danny. Both came from Vallejo to enjoy a day at the fair.

"Of course he's going to say that," said Danny. His son replied again, "I'm going to win anyways."

"No. No. No." said Danny. "Who pays the bills around the house? It should always be the dad that wins," he said to his son.

The Van Looy family from Livermore took a different approach, since they had three generations at the fair.

"I'm gonna let the kids win. The reason why: because if we go back to the car and they don't have a prize, it's not going to be a good day," said grandpa Geert Van Looy.

The dads won on Sunday no matter what. For the third year in a row, they didn't have to pay for admission on Father's Day until 5:00 p.m.

"Our fair falls over Father's Day. We really have to come up with a way to celebrate dads, and we were like, 'Well they've got to get in free!'" said Angel Moore, a spokesperson for the Alameda County Fair.

That means more money to spend on fair food, the games, and of course, the rides. The new one this year? Mega-Flip.

"It is twisty, turny, gets you up real high," says Moore.

The families at the fair Sunday said the most important part about Father's Day is everything money can't buy.

"It's fabulous. It's great. Enjoying the time and the weather. It's fun out here being with my son. It's just, it's awesome," says Danny Mendes.

"He's shown me how to be a great person, so I'm hoping to pass those skills down to my son, and I think that's why we all love him so much," said Chris Van Looy of his father Geert.

"Good answer!" Geert responded as he laughed.

"We're special to him, and he's special to us," said 10 year old Viviana Cortesi of her father Joe.

"Best Father's Day ever," Joe responded in agreement.

The Alameda County Fair is open from 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday each week until July 7.

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