Carnival Closes Casey Anthony Dunking Booth

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LEXINGTON, Kentucky ~ (Lexington Herald-Leader/Kentucky.com/AP) ~ A local carnival made the decision to shut down a Casey Anthony dunking booth after negative public outcry.

Officials at the Lexington Lions Club Bluegrass Fair made the decision to close a dunking booth on July 19th, which featured a Casey Anthony look-alike. Ron Mossotti, chairman of the fair held in Masterson Station Park, said the decision was made to remove references to Anthony after they received negative opinions and the misconception that the Lexington Lions Club had orchestrated the concept. A news release issued later that night said, “the Lexington Lions Club, who sponsors the Bluegrass Fair, wanted to be respectful of the growing public sentiment that the booth created by crossing the line and by distracting many people from the real purpose of the fair.”

The “State vs Anthony” dunking booth allowed fairgoers to vent their frustrations at Anthony’s recent acquittal in the death of her 2-year-old daughter Caylee and featured two targets, “innocent” and “guilty”, both which would dunk the impersonator. Several people got to try their best pitch before the booth was shut down shortly after the fair opened. Mossotti acknowledged that the booth was “tacky and tasteless” but also said that fairs are tacky and tasteless, adding, “we’re not running a high-end social event.”

Fair Office Inc., a fair management company which brings in rides, entertainment and concessions had offered the booth to the Lions Club fair board; the fair promoted the dunking booth on Facebook and Twitter website and even posted a video. Michael Kaplan, with public relation at Fair Office, said this was the only fair where they had offered the Anthony booth. Mossotti monitored public reaction during the booth’s operation the previous night, “it stirred up a lot of opinions, both good and bad. Most people laughed, they though it was more satire than offensive. P.T. Barnum, a genius for his day, did things much worse than this”, Mossotti said.

Photo credit: Hanna Potes/Kentucky.com

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