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Monday, April 8, 2013

Mister State Fair George Hamid Has Lived In A Trunk, Run The Steel Pier And He Owns A Circus
from: philly.com
By TAMARA JEFFRIES, Daily News Staff Writer
August 01, 1986
``I'm bred for this just like, I guess, a good horse is bred for racing," says George Hamid Jr.
Hamid is president of the New Jersey State Fair, and for the next 10 days, he will be at the center of thousands of people - performers, exhibitors, politicians, farmers, craftsmen, animal trainers, pie bakers, vendors, fruit growers, parking attendants and others - who will make up the 241st New Jersey State Fair.
The extravaganza, which opens today and runs through Aug. 10 at the Garden State Park race track in Cherry Hill, is, according to fair officials, bigger and better than ever.
"I really love that state fair. It's like no other fair you'll ever see," Hamid says. His enthusiasm is no surprise, since he's been in charge of the fair since 1971. Before that, he was vice president of the fair and before that, even as far back as his infancy, he lived and breathed the excitement of the circus and the fair.
He's also president of the Greensboro (North Carolina) Fair and co-owner of the Hamid-Morton Shrine Circus - natural positions for a man who was born into the business.
It started with his father, who came to the U.S. with Buffalo Bill's circus. It was the senior Hamid who saw to it that his son knew about the circus business from the ground up.
Like a grandfather telling proud tales to his grandchildren, Hamid happily spins a yarn of how his father, "a little kid from Lebanon," joined the Buffalo Bill show while it was touring in Marseilles, France
There's only a hint of a smile on his face, but he glows as he tells the story of his father's job as Annie Oakley's helper.
"You know Annie Oakley?" he asks. "When her act was over, he would take her boots off. She had big feet and, so it would look good, she would wear small shoes. He would tug, tug, tug and there was a bucket of cold water and Annie Oakley would put her feet in." He demonstrates how his father struggled to pull too-small boots off legendary feet.
"She took a very great fondness to my father," he says. "She couldn't read or write much at all, but she got him a primer and he taught himself, with the little bit of help from her, how to read and write English."
read more:
http://articles.philly.com/1986-08-01/entertainment/26063945_1_george-hamid-circus-business-fair-officials

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