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Operation Ferris Wheel: Deputies Monitoring for Sex Offenders at Dixie Classic Fair

Forsyth County Sheriff's Office says it has reminded registered sex offenders they are not allowed to attend the fair.

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — While you're focused on having a fun time at the Dixie Classic Fair, Forsyth County Sheriff's Deputies will be monitoring for sex offenders who show up unlawfully. 

The Forsyth Sheriff's Office (FCSO) is conducting Operation Ferris Wheel again this year to make sure registered sex offenders stay away from the fair. 

North Carolina law says registered sex offenders aren't allowed to be on the premises "during the period of time that an agricultural fair is being conducted." 

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FCSO says signs are posted at entrances to the fairgrounds, but they have also reminded registered offenders in the months leading up to the fair that they are not allowed to be there. 

"Although we don’t see any immediate threat this is more of a precaution to keep you and your family safe," said Lt. Robert Shinault with the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office.

Last year, Operation Ferris Wheel resulted in the identification of three registered sex offenders on fairgrounds. Fair organizers say they're grateful for Winston-Salem Police and the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office's presence at the fair.

"It is a very successful program, mostly as a deterrent," said a spokesperson for the Dixie Classic Fair, Siobhan Olsen.

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"You will see a lot of officers covering the grounds at all times," she said.

Both the sheriff's office and fair organizers encourage parents to stay close to their children, and not let them wander off alone. 

Olsen says if parents and children get separated, they have procedures in place to locate the child.

The Dixie Classic Fair starts Friday, October 4. 


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