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O.C. Fair halts elephant rides, ending 25-year tradition

March 22, 2012 |  3:00 pm

Responding to animal rights activists, Orange County Fair Board officials have banned elephant rides at the annual Orange County Fair, ending a quarter-century summertime tradition.

Thursday’s vote not to renew the fair’s contract with Have Trunk Will Travel Inc. came after a long and emotional hearing that drew more than 100 people.

Some speakers urged the fair board to continue the elephant rides, while others -– some animal rights activists and veterinary specialists -– asked that the rides be halted.

Following the lead of the Santa Ana Zoo, which halted elephants rides last summer, the board voted 7 to 1 to not renew the contract, with David Ellis dissenting.


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Photo: The elephant ride at the Orange County Fair. Credit: Daily Pilot