Volume 104, Number 32 - August 9, 2007
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Fair attendance up from last year
The annual Sublette County Fair came to a close Sunday evening, and Fair Board Manager Gary Kanski was pleased with the overall turnout.
“I would say [attendance] was definitely up from last year,” Kanski said. Since there is no gate admission and no charge for parking, Kanski said it was difficult to judge exactly how many people attended the fair.
At certain points during the week, Kanski said he did have some younger gentlemen sit out and attempt to count the number of people entering the gate.“My goal is not to run the perfect fair,” Kanski said. “ … I just want people to have the best time they can and return home safely.”
Kanski said he was very satisfied with the fair, though he acknowledged that everything is not entirely perfect every year. “We had a very safe fair,” he said. “But there’s always room for improvement.” One of the big draws at this year’s county fair was the BlackHawk and Little Texas concert Friday evening. “There were 1,000 physical tickets sold,” he said, adding that more people paid admission at the door.
Overall, Kanski said he estimates that between 1,300 and 1,500 people attended the concert. Though he said his quest is not to gloat if the fair is a success, Kanski said he has received a great deal of positive feedback from attendees and others who participated in the events.
“I have had many people say it was probably the best fair they’ve seen,” Kanski said. “We’ve had a very good response.” The weather hindered some of the fair events, but Kanski said he was not bothered by the rain and thunderstorms that moved through the area last week. “The rain was a blessing,” he said. Due to the weather, some of the outdoor events had to be moved indoors in order to protect participants and their livestock, Kanski said.
Those who are typically working and don’t have the opportunity to attend the fair were able to come out for the event because of the weather, Kanski said. “It got a lot of ranchers who are usually in the hayfields out here,” he said. “This year we tried to combine activities at the fair with entertainment for the kids,” Kanski said.
The Rhinestone Ropers not only performed free shows for all those in attendance, but also provided souvenirs for children.
“Every kid went out of here with a custom-made rope,” Kanski said. The junior livestock sale on Sunday afternoon was also a great success, Kanski said.
“We sold 87 animals in the sale,” Terry Springman said. “And the buyers were fantastic.” A lot of big companies in the area donated several of the animals to be sold and helped raise a significant sum of money. Sublette County Extension Office Agent Eric Peterson said the bulk of the animals up for sale were raised and owned by the children who were selling them.
“This year was much better than last year,” he said, adding that over $400,000 was raised. During last year’s livestock sale, 86 head were sold, but only $260,000 was brought in, whereas this year the gross sale was $420,000, Peterson said.
“Essentially, there was the same amount of livestock [both years],” he said. Though most of the children participating have raised many animals, Peterson said this sale allowed each of them to sell one animal. All of the sales commission goes back to the kids.
“Twenty-four animals purchased in the sale were donated back to various worthy enterprises,” Peterson said. Some of these enterprises include the Food Basket, the Sublette Center, Rendezvous Pointe and the Southwest Pioneer Center.
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