Big Tex is back.
Tex, the folksy cowboy who burned down last fall at the State Fair of Texas, was unveiled prematurely Thursday, a day earlier than planned.
He’s brand new from head to toe, showing off a bright white shirt and fancy boots that show off bluebonnets and other classic Texas scenes.
Big Tex had been put into place at Big Tex Circle early Thursday, under the cover of darkness. He was shrouded by tall drapes that surrounded him. It was as if he were taking a shower.
But the drapes didn’t cover his head. So TV helicopters hovered overhead and caught a glimpse of his head and part of his body.
But blame his premature arrival on the wind. Gusts were whipping the curtain around, and that worried State Fair officials. While Big Tex is designed to withstand 100-mph winds, he isn’t designed to dance with an out-of-control curtain.
So, around 2 p.m. Thursday, the curtain came down.
The State Fair opens at 10 a.m. Friday. A 2 p.m. ceremony will be held at Big Tex Circle to welcome back the tallest talkin’ Texan. That’s when we’ll hear his new voice for the first time.
In this edition of Big Tex 101, we offer some facts and figures about the new guy. Bottom line: He's big.
Out with the old, in with the new:
Before fire -- 52 feet
After fire -- 55 feet
Before -- 31 feet
After -- 33 feet, 9 inches
Before -- 75 gallon
After -- 95 gallon
Before -- 70
After -- 96
Before -- 7 feet, 8 inches
After -- 10 feet, 9 inches
Before -- 7 feet, 7 inches tall
After -- 12 feet tall
Before -- 3 feet long
After -- 5 feet, 6 inches long
Before -- 22 feet long
After -- 27 feet long
Before -- 23 1/2 feet
After -- 27 feet
In 1952 -- $750
In 2013 -- $500,000
Source: State Fair of Texas
Can’t get enough about Big Tex? Here are links to previous installments of Big Tex 101: