It’s easy to spot the scam artists at the Valley Fair.
You just have to look.
“You have to know where to look for them,” said Bob Doolittle, a former Valley Fair vendor who now operates an online database of valley fair vendors.
“If you can’t tell who the vendor is, you don’t know if they are legit or not.”
Doolittle said it’s not just about finding out who the valley fair is, but finding out how to avoid it.
“If they are not a vendor who is coming to your door to do business, you should never, ever go there,” he said.
Doolitt said he would give the valley Fair vendor’s name a call to see if they have a good reputation.
“When I see that name, I don’t think, ‘Well, this person is a bad guy, he’s doing this for money,'” he said, adding it’s also important to note the valley’s logo and the Fair’s logo.
Doolsittle said he’s also careful to avoid the fake vendors who try to sell you a fake ticket or pass.
“They might give you a pass, and they may also give you something that’s fake.
You have to be really careful,” he added.
Door-to-door salespeople who try selling you a ticket or other product at the fair usually have a contract with the fair, and Doolitt says he’ll check with the vendors beforehand if they don’t have one.
“Some vendors will give you one thing and tell you to go get it, but if you get it and it’s fake, they might just give you another,” he explained.
“But, I always tell people to ask them what their product is and to be very, very careful when they sell something, because you might get into trouble.”
Doole said it doesn’t hurt to be cautious about what you buy.
“I don’t give it a lot of thought, it’s a lot more like buying a used car,” he joked.
Dooly said he does recommend getting a copy of the Fair Association’s website, and checking to make sure there are no scams.
“People are looking for a certain product, and I would say, ‘OK, I’m going to buy this,’ because there’s always something else out there,” said Dool.
“And, if you know that it’s an authentic product, then you can be sure that the seller is genuine.”
To check out the Fair, head to www.valleyfair.org.