The state fair is right around the corner, and television ads are airing mostly in Northern California, featuring a very familiar voice and name, along with a well-known buddy.
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger along with his friend and former co-star Danny DeVito make a quick cameo appearance at the end of the commercial. Schwarzenegger may be an embattled Governor, but the appearance could be a way to resurrect his populist image. So says Professor Barbara O’Connor, who directs the Institute for the Study of Media and Politics at Sacramento State University.
“So the thing that this ad does is conjures up our earlier feelings about him in a very nice, not hard-sell sort of way and I think it’s very smart of him to do it.”
State Fair C-E-O Norb Bartosik says Schwarzenegger is the first Governor to take part in a T-V ad for the fair and it was a calculated choice.
“When we saw some of the other promotions on Buy California and Tourism and those things working before we asked the Governor’s office if they would consider it, we pitched them on the ideas and they thought they were fun and said yes they’d do it, and we’re very happy to have that happen.”
Bartosik says there was a jump in advance ticket sales for the event that begins August 12th after the ad campaign began. He hopes admission numbers will exceed one-million this year, a milestone he says has been hit twice in the last five years.