Wichita Falls preps for Ink Masters Expo

WICHITA FALLS, Tx (RNN Texoma) - The Ink Masters Expo is coming to Wichita Falls for the first time ever June 1-3, and city leaders are prepping for the event.

It's already looking like it could be a big hit based on the number of artists taking part.

In its first year in Wichita Falls, all of the artist space has already been sold out. There will be 80 artists for people to see Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

The whole reason this expo is possible is that, in December, city councilors passed a resolution to change a city ordinance to allow for tattoos and body piercings not just in a licensed shop, but at temporary events as well like conventions and expos.

Mayor Stephen Santellana said landing this expo is a huge win for Wichita Falls.

"You got to think about the fact we've got young airmen, we've got MSU, and Vernon College," Mayor Santellana said. "These are the type of events that draw those guys out. And it's a lot of outside people. These aren't just people from Wichita Falls. These are a lot of outside tattoo artists coming to Wichita Falls, spending their dollars, setting up shop here, and getting to show off their talents."

Director of the Wichita Falls Conventions and Visitors Bureau, Lindsay Barker, said they're not sure how many people will come with it being their first year.

But the event organizer said they typically average 2,000 people each year.

Mayor Santellana said events like these aren't targeted necessarily for millennials, but it shows people the city is willing to do something different and think outside the box.

Wichita Falls Director of Health Lou Kreidler said she doesn't see any health issues with the ordinance change made in 2017.

She said the city can allow tattoos and body piercings at these temporary events and still protect the health and safety of the community.

Here are the times and prices for the event:

Friday: 1:00pm - 5:00pm = $15
Friday: 5:00pm - 11:00pm = $20
Saturday: 11:00am - 11:00pm = $20
Sunday: 11:00am - 9:00pm = $20
3-day weekend pass = $35

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