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‘Come home to the Sac County Fair’

Fair celebrates 150 years

-Messenger photo by Kriss Nelson
Morgan Caswell, of Neenah, Wisconsin, gives her horse, Prince, a bath. Caswell and Prince were in Sac City to compete in the barrel racing competition in the Barnes PRCA Rodeo on Wednesday evening.

SAC CITY — A chainsaw artist, magicians, clowns, and face painting are just some of the daily activities that are a part of a large celebration for this year’s Sac County Fair.

“Come home to the Sac County Fair” is the theme for this year’s fair and it will go down in history as the 150th year of the event.

In addition to the daily events, some of the larger grandstand entertainment includes the Outlaw Tractor Pull and Out of the Field Tractor Pull tonight and Figure 8 races Friday evening. Both events are followed by Duane Murley as DJ and a beer garden.

The fair will end Saturday night with a concert by Sawyer Brown followed by fireworks.

Much like other county fairs this year, organizers of the Sac County Fair made adjustments due to the COVID 19 pandemic so they could hold their 150th fair.

-Messenger photo by Kriss Nelson
Sac County Fair royalty including Little Mr. Sac County Landon Voyles, Little Miss Sac County Kenlee Greenlee and Sac County Fair Queen Abby Scott stand in front of a 150th anniversary quilt that will be raffled off at the end of the fair.

“The livestock shows have all been shifted. They are come and goes. They come the same day they show and leave,” said Amanda Weber, Sac County Fair manager. “The static exhibits were judged last week.”

Weber said there has been extra seating put out throughout the fairgrounds and grandstands which should allow for more social distancing throughout the crowds during those larger events.

“We are doing everything we can to make this safe and fun for everybody, including a cleaning and sanitizing crew coming in to keep things clean,” she said.

Keeping an old fair new

To help keep the Sac County Fair thriving, Weber said they have recently taken a different direction to planning.

-Messenger photo by Kriss Nelson
Grant Movall, 15, of Schaller, and a member of the Early Achievers 4-H Club, waters his pigs on Wednesday before the swine show at the Sac County Fair.

“We have come a long ways in the last five to 10 years. We have more things going on then we ever have before,” she said. “We think there is so much more potential for what we can be. We have the facilities to do things and we would like to start utilizing them and giving people things to come do and come see.”

The Ag Learning Center was started seven years ago during that time of transition.

Matt Naberhaus, Sac County Fair board president, said the exhibit was started as a way to try to get more agricultural education out there as well as something for kids of all ages to do while at the fair.

This year, the Ag Learning Center will open at 1p.m. today; 10 a.m. Friday and 9 a.m. Saturday.

Visitors to the center will have the chance to get up close and personal with baby pigs, ducks, turkeys, a goose, chickens, and possibly get to witness chicken eggs hatching.

-Messenger photo by Kriss Nelson
Kinzie Erpelding, 12, of Lytton, helps her brother, Kole Erpelding, 7, with his rabbit Flash that he brought to the Sac County Fair to show in the Clover Kids rabbit show.

Dixie the milk cow is also there for milking demonstrations, and Naberhaus said they are hoping to make mozzarella cheese from her milk.

Puppy Dog the bucket calf is there as well as Buford, the 2,400 pound steer.

The Sac County Fair is definitely the first for Puppy Dog, but not the first visit for Buford.

“Buford is Hanna Grieme’s steer that she showed as a feeder calf here and did not want to see him go to slaughter,” said Naberhaus.

Buford is on hand at the Ag Learning Center to help raise money for the fair’s Raise the Roof campaign.

-Messenger photo by Kriss Nelson
Erin Johnson, of Cushing, gives Puppy Dog, the bottle calf, a treat at the Ag Learning Center at the Sac County Fair on Wednesday.

“For a price, kids can come in and get a picture either on him or next to him,” he said.

After the end of this year’s fair, the show ring and beef barn will be demolished in order to make room for new structures.

This is being made possible by the fair’s Raise the Roof campaign.

The campaign was made popular last year after 4-H’er, Justin Rupnow had the idea to donate his auction earnings — an idea that spiraled among other 4-H’ers that resulted in a $22,000 donation for the cause.

Other fundraising efforts have been made, including a quilt that will be auctioned off at the end of the fair. The quilt was made by Logan Pickhinke and other 4-H’ers and even non-4-H’ers in memory of Pickhinke’s cousin, Jon Pickhinke.

A family affair

Abby Scott, 17, of Lake View, was crowned 2020 Sac County Fair Queen. It was watching her sisters that made her decide to run for the position.

“I decided that I wanted to run for Sac County Fair Queen because I saw my older sisters do it and how they were a positive role model to the younger generation and I wanted to do the same,” she said.

Scott said she is especially honored to be queen for the 150th year of the fair.

“It’s very cool,” she said. “Although our fair is a little different this year, I still think it is very special.”

Scott, along with Little Mr. Sac County Landon Voyles, of Sac City, and Little Miss Sac County Kenlee Greenlee, also of Sac City, will be greeting people throughout the fair and will also be handing out ribbons and trophies at the livestock show.

In addition to enjoying her time visiting with people at the fair, Scott said she is looking forward to all of the food — especially the ice cream.

Grant Movall, 15, from Schaller and a member of the Early Achievers 4-H Club has been showing pigs since his second year in 4-H. It’s something he decided to do in order to follow in his father, Alan Movall’s footsteps.

“My dad used to do it, so I wanted to do it. It’s fun,” he said. “The show is always the best part. You do all of the work– getting them all ready and trained. The show is always so fun.”

Movall was also looking forward to being a part of the 150th celebration.

“It’s going to be special to everyone,” he said. “The Sac County Fair is the best fair.”

150 years of the Sac County Fair

The static exhibits may not be on display in the 4-H building this year, but rather 150 years of Sac County Fair history has taken its place.

“We have ribbons from the 1930s, we have the history of the fairgrounds and the harness racing that was back from the 1930s and 1940s,” said Weber.

A scavenger hunt throughout the fairgrounds will also help visitors learn more about the history of the fair.

What keeps people coming back for 150 years?

“I think one thing that makes our fair special is just how you grow up coming to the fair and then we have a lot of people who continue to come and support the fair — whether that is coming every year or working or volunteering,” said Gene McBride, Sac County Fair office manager.

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