The 164th Morrow County Fair, opening August 25 for an eight day run, will carry out this year’s slogan “Made in Morrow County.”
Many of the exhibits, demonstrations, entertainment, shows, food, etc. originate in Morrow County, where talent abounds.
One of the major changes is the joining by the Morrow County Agricultural Society with the Ohio Fair Race Conference, a move that, according to Ron Williams, Washington Township director, will generate more money for the harness racing program by opening the way for more horses to enter the racing program.
Harness racing is scheduled for Monday and Tuesday evenings at 6 pm.
An addition to the grounds is a new and larger ice cream building constructed by the Morrow County Dairy Producers. The new structure, which will still offer ice cream through two windows and two for pickup, is 26 feet long, four feet longer than the previous structure.
Dan Rogers, president of the fair board, said they carried out a lot of maintenance on the grounds this year. Rogers, who is serving his 24th year on the board, credited Tom Nauman with keeping the grounds updated.
Mary Weiler, secretary-treasurer, named some highlights in the entertainment area. Tuesday evening, August 26, Elvis’ Lost Brother will entertain at the grandstand. Other grandstand highlights will include the School Bus and Truck Figure 8 and Lawn Mower Derby Wednesday evening and the Draft Horse Pull on Sunday at 7 pm.
Returning this year are the popular Inflatables from Dayspring Wesleyan Church, Marion on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The talented Wood Carvers can be found performing between the two county buildings and the Bear Hollow Chinese Exhibitors will present four shows daily. Magician Bobby Maverick will give three shows daily from different locations on the grounds.
Special Days at the fair will be Morrow County Commissioners on Monday, August 25; Discount Drug Mart, Tuesday, August 26; Blackstone Insurance Agency, Inc., Wednesday, August 27; Ramco Rental, Inc Thursday, August 28; Touchtone Energy Day by Consolidated Electric Cooperative, Friday, August 29; Burkhart Farm Center, Inc, Saturday, August 20; Poet Bio Fuel Refining, Sunday, August 31 and Morrow County Hospital, Monday, September 1.
Senior Citizens Day will be observed Tuesday, August 26 when persons age 62 and above are admitted free from 7 am to 4 pm and Veterans Day will be observed, Sunday, August 31, when veterans with proper military ID will be admitted free fro 7 am to 4 pm The veterans will be honored during the grandstand program at 12:30 pm Sunday.
Admission remains the same with daily gate admission being $6 for persons six years and older. Season passes for those 16 and over are $25 and the youth ticket, ages 7-15, is $15. Pit passes for the infield Tuesday through Sunday at Gate B will be $6 and on Monday, September 1, they will be $10.
Junior fair exhibitors/advisors are $3. Children under 6, parking and the grandstand are free.
Midway rides are not included with any pass or daily admission and wristbands are $10 per day.
Gate B is to be used for the pit area parking on the day of the event only and for handicapped parking. All other admission is through Gate C or the Back Gate D.
Working the gates will be the Mount Gilead Music Boosters and the infield will be managed by the Northmor Running Club.
Directors of the Agricultural society whose terms expire this year include Charlie Lynn, Peru; Brandon Strain, Cardington; Russ Mayer, Franklin; Jenny Bachelder, Perry; Brian Adams, At-large; Matt Carwell, Canaan and Tim Weiler, at-large.
All of these directors are seeking re -election. At this time, only one township has an opponent. Tim Brake is running for the Cardington position.
Deadline for submitting a petition to run for election as a director is August 22.
On the ballot will be a constitutional amendment presented by the Ohio Department of Agriculture that would move the director’s election to the first Saturday in November and this election would no longer be held during the fair if passed.
There will be many activities in the Draft Horse barn area including the Draft Horse Hitch classes. The log cabin, owned by the Morrow County Historical Society, will be open for touring each day.
Small stage entertainment will range from musical to marital arts, gymnastics, cheerleading, etc.
A church service will be held in the youth building Sunday morning, at 8 am. Key Ministries will hold a musical service Sunday evening August 24, at the small stage.
The annual parade on Sunday will be preceded by junior fair awards and the presentation of the county bands at the grandstand.
On Monday, the last day of the fair the livestock sale will be followed by the open demolition derby at 5 pm.
Although the overall entries are down, the total entries are 2,314. Floral entries have also decreased slightly this year. However, the many entries are all “Made in Morrow County,” and with that endorsement, the fair is sure to be the success it has always been.
As Rogers pointed out, the Morrow County Fair remains one of the best in the area, because, “we have some really good board members.”
Assisting in the secretary’s office this year are Jean Staiger and Patty Barth.