You Ask We Investigate: Is the star of a fair attraction being m - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

You Ask We Investigate: Is the star of a fair attraction being mistreated?

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Strange spectacles like bearded women and two headed animals have been a part of carnivals and fairs for as long as anyone can remember. But are these performers ever exploited?

"Little Lina, the world's smallest woman, alive on the inside of this exhibit!" Shouts the PA system along the Sioux Empire Fair's midway.

At 29 inches tall, Little Lina has lived up to her name; attracting people of all ages to take a look behind the box.

"I've seen her around for several years now, almost the past ten years coming to events like this all across the country with the same people, same stand, this is her gig." Said exhibit spokesman Paul Nemeth.

But not everyone is onboard with Little Lina's act. KSFY received several emails and Facebook messages regarding Little Lina. Many suggested she is being mistreated, held in a cage, and gawked at by fair-goers. Much like John Merrick in the movie the Elephant Man.

But Nemeth says in no way is Little Lina's well being put in jeopardy.

"I'm sure if people are concerned it's probably because it's brand new to them." Said Nemeth.

In fact Little Lina is also a little humanitarian. She sends most of her profits back to her native Haiti to help kids in orphanages. KSFY spoke with a few of Little Lina's visitors Wednesday afternoon, their concerns quickly left when they took their first peek.

"I was just nervous about what I was going to see." Said Peggy King.

"Yeah, there's a little chair back there and a little computer." Added CJ King.

We can't show you exactly how tall Little Lina is without ruining the surprise or hurting business, but KSFY can honestly tell you Little Lina is alive and well. If you still don't believe, you'll just have to come to the Sioux Empire Fair and see her for yourself.

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