GRANTSBURG— It’s Fair time.
This is true for every enthusiastic fair-goer, but for the 20-some dedicated Fair Board members, it never stops.
“We both just grew into this,” Coke Scheider said, as she recalled the days of childhood when she would accompany her parents to the Agricultural Society Fair.
Coke and her husband Bruce were born into Fair families, both had dairy farming parents on the Fair board. “It’s in our blood,” said Bruce.
He was adamant that the Fair is a team effort, a year-round project vigorously organized by fellow board members and other happy volunteers.
The board boasts several longtime enthusiasts and even some younger community members striving to keep the Fair a top-notch event. It’s a year-long commitment.
After the festivities simmer in late August and a short break in fall, the board is back at work and meet the first Thursday of every month and then more frequently as the days roll off the calendar.
“It takes many more hours than 98% of people realize,” said Bruce with a laugh.
All the work this year has led to the board introducing new events for the 140th Burnett County Agricultural Society Fair.
The new Friday night Grandstand event will feature the Ultimate Truck series. To put it simply, monster trucks.
The group is out of Minnesota and the Scheiders are confident the fast, muddy show will not disappoint. However, perhaps the biggest draw for this new event is the local talent that will participate.
“We’re excited to have local participants, we think that will bring in a good crowd,” said Bruce.
After the show, trucks will be on display and audience members can get a close-up of the trucks and even meet some drivers.
SENIOR CITIZEN DAY
From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday, before the revving of engine fills the air, senior citizens will enjoy a plethora of activities like polka and old country music, free pie and ice cream, and “bingo under the big tent.”
Also, the “century club,” those 100 and older, will be recognized by the County Aging Department at 2 p.m.
FAMILY FUN DAY
From noon to 6 p.m. on Saturday, the board has planned extra events for families to enjoy. In the big tent, free ice cream cones for the kids will be available which will soon be followed by a sawdust pile and face painting.
“Little Britches” judging will begin for contestants in the cattle barn at 2 p.m. Following, families can settle in for the classic parade and, this year, “Pickles” the Clown, the balloon animal specialist will make an appearance.
Pickles will be on the grounds throughout the afternoon performing balloon art and even comedy.
Some new events will be available come Sunday. The classic car show beings at 9 a.m. at the Fairgrounds and will carry folks into the early afternoon when the new Farmers’ Market and craft show will be up and running until 3 p.m.
While not necessarily new, this event is a quintessential piece of the Fair puzzle. This year, the derby begins at 7 p.m. Friday.
“We will have power wheel demos for the kids and even a lawnmower derby,” said Bruce.
After these two events, the multiple classes for the demolition derby will begin. While not much will be different from previous years, the board is excited to introduce a “two-man” class in the derby.
The Fair, the celebration of Burnett County’s character, is an event for young, old and all in between. It’s a time for parents to watch their children make fond, tender memories.
If the Fair had a mission statement it would be, “for the kids,” said Coke, which Bruce followed with “and the community.”
“I’d say my favorite part is the Lego building contest,” said Levi, the eight-year-old and three-year grand champion grandchild of Bruce of Coke.
“I brought my calf,” said five-year-old Naomi, Levi’s sister. Naomi already has quite a bit of practice showing her calf at the “Little Britches” show. She will be ready for the 4-H contests very soon.
This year the board is introducing wristband deals. Standard wristbands ($20) are offered on pre-sale locally and are good for one of three four-hour blocks: Thursday 6-10, Friday and Saturday 1-5.
However, the biggest deal comes with the super wristband. This gets fair-goers unlimited rides all weekend and costs $50 at the Fair and $40 in advance. Check www.grantsburgfair.com for details.
The 140th Burnett County Agricultural Society Fair begins August 24 and spans through the weekend.
“We have a pretty full agenda this year. It was a board effort,” said Bruce.