County anticipates 136th fair


Fayette County Fairgrounds

The 136th edition of the Fayette County Fair, which will run July 20-25, is expected to be bigger and better than ever.

“During last year’s fair, the weather was very nice and our attendance was up about 10 percent,” said Robert Schwartz, the president of the Fayette County Fair Board. “Our goal is always to exceed last year’s numbers. Although you can never control the weather, we have great new attractions, rides and shows for the public to see.”

This will be the second year of the fair’s relationship with Amusements of America, the largest traveling amusement park in the world, according to the Guinness Book of World Records. Since its founding 70 years ago, the company has enjoyed tremendous success.

“Our new ride company was very well-received last year,” said Schwartz. “The ride company will be bringing the same number of rides this year. After our fair week, this company goes straight to the state fair, so you know they are top-notch rides. Last year, the standout ride was the Ferris Wheel, which you could see for miles. The lighting and graphics were really outstanding.”

Along with the Ferris Wheel, some of the other rides scheduled to be at the Fayette County Fair are the FireBall, the Gravitron, the Ring of Fire and Vertigo, among others. For more information on Amusements of America and its rides, visit www.amusementsofamerica.com.

Although the fair doesn’t officially kick off until Monday, July 20, there will be a Sunday evening celebration ceremony at the McDonald’s Grandstand that’s open to the public at 5:30 p.m. During the ceremony, the crowning of this year’s Fayette County Fair Queen will be made, along with appearances from the fair queen candidates and all of the commodity queens.

“I want to give credit to Patchwork Gardens, Keith Hart from Robbins Village Florist in Greenfield and Robin’s Nest in Jeffersonville for donating all the flowers to the queens,” said Faith Cottrill, the fair board secretary. “I also want to thank Kile Landscaping, Home Depot, McClish’s and Patchwork Gardens for the flower pots all over the fairgrounds.”

There will be a Hawaiian theme to this year’s celebration ceremony and all of the fair royalty will be arriving in the grandstand on “boats without the water,” Cottrill said.

On Monday, July 20 at 7 a.m., a ribbon-cutting will be held at the main gate to officially open the fair. Also on Monday, the Guys & Gals Lead will begin at 5:30 p.m. at the Sales Arena. For fantastic symphonic music, the Cincinnati Pops are returning this year to the Fayette County Fair. The concert will begin Monday at 8 p.m. at the McDonald’s Grandstand. To wrap up the day Monday, Country Express will perform from 8 to 10:30 p.m. at the Sound Stage.

For the rest of the week’s entertainment, check out the Record-Herald’s Fair Preview section, publishing on Thursday, July 16.

Tuesday is Senior Citizen Day when all seniors can get into the fairgrounds for free.

Thursday at the fair is Veterans’ Day when all veterans are provided free admission.

Daily general admission is $9, which includes rides and all McDonald’s Grandstand attractions. “Once you get in, everything like that is free,” said Schwartz. Children 2 years and under receive free admission.

Weekly, daily and mega-passes may be purchased at Pettit’s in downtown Washington C.H. and the fairgrounds.

Pre-sale weekly passes, which include daily admission, are $30. “We have one-day tickets for $6, but they must be purchased by Sunday, July 19 at 4 p.m.,” said Schwartz.

The mega-pass, which includes rides, is $40. The rides are scheduled to operate daily from 1 p.m. to 11 p.m. The Midway is open until 11 p.m. each day.

Membership tickets, which admit the holder to the fair each week day and entitles that person to vote for the fair directors, are $40. These tickets must be purchased by July 15.

Lunch tickets (for lunch only) are $9 and may be purchased at the gate. These tickets are good for one hour and may be redeemed at the gate upon leaving if done so within this one-hour time limit. “You don’t have to use these lunch tickets from noon to 1,” said Cottrill. “If your lunch hour is 2 to 3 or 3 to 4, that’s just fine.”

Camping this year is $200 a spot. “We have 34 new sites this year to camp on, so we still have a couple openings,” said Cottrill.

The Fayette County World Championship Rodeo will return this year on Saturday, July 25 at 8 p.m. following a one-year absence. Entrants for this event will need to call in by July 20 between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. at 1-800-639-9002. Stick horse races for children will also be held during the rodeo. “I think we’ll have an outstanding crowd for this,” said Schwartz.

Another new attraction is a flag burning that will take place at 1 p.m. on Thursday. The ever-popular Pedal Pull will begin at 4 p.m. on Saturday. “Last year, we had 86 participants in the Pedal Pull,” said Schwartz. “It grows every year.”

The popular petting zoo will return, as well as the Hall of Champions, which features the champion animals from the week’s livestock shows.

Before the fair even begins, open class entries, which includes horticulture, photography, etc., will be held this Friday and Saturday, July 10 and 11.

“We’re expecting a very nice fair again this year,” said Schwartz. “We are hoping and praying for nice weather. If it could repeat last year’s weather, that would be fantastic. We have a lot of new buildings for people to see and have some new things coming. Everyone come out and enjoy.”

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