The Carroll County Fair has a lot to offer this year, 2008

Agriculture on display for Carroll County Fair

By Allen Worrell, News Writer
Wednesday, September 10, 2008 5:24 AM CDT
No matter who you are, your age, or your walk of life, if you live in Carroll County, you have been impacted by agriculture. With nearly 1,000 farms in the county, agriculture remains one of the biggest and most vital aspects of life in Carroll.

Copyright © 2008 – The Carroll News

Parlaying that message to the public, especially the younger generation, is part of the goal of the Carroll County Agricultural Fair, which will begin Sept. 18 and run through Sept. 21.

“One of our goals in this is based around trying to educate the young folks of the impact of agriculture to the local economy,” Fair Chairman Kevin Semones said. “The whole thing is centered on agriculture. Sure, they will be hay rides and games and things of that nature, but it is all centered around agriculture. Agriculture is a very important part of our economy and hopefully this will showcase some of the things our farmers are doing.”

As part of the educational process for the younger generation, the fair committee will bring in second and third graders from all school systems in the area. Students will tour stations involving crops, bee-keeping, storytelling, the Future Farmers of America, livestock, and others.

“Hopefully it will be information that will be applicable to 2nd and 3rd graders and be applicable to their SOLS,” Semones said. “It is all centered around agriculture in this area, which is still a vital part of our economy. I think it is important we educate folks about agriculture in this region and hopefully this fair is a part of this process. We do want it to be educational, but for everybody, not just children.”

To that end, antique farm equipment and an antique tractor pull will be part of the fair. Several local equipment dealers will bring in top-of-the-line modern equipment as well.

“Our logo is Past, Present, and Future,” Semones said. “We want to showcase some things to give an idea of what agriculture in this area was like 100 years ago, but we are also trying to show how this thing has changed since 1900.”

While many of the popular exhibits and activities from the fair’s recent past will still be available, there are several exciting new events this year. After a one-year absence, the Miss Carroll County Pageant will be back, and entries are still being accepted. The Blue Ridge Motorcycle Club will also host a motorcycle cruise-in Sept. 20, where a best-in-show and a top three will be determined. The Carroll County FFA and 4-H will also team to host a horseshoe pitching contest on Sun., Sept. 21.

The past three fairs have all ended on Saturday, but this year’s fair has been extended to Sunday. Many events have been moved to those days since it is harder to draw crowds on weekdays as opposed to weekends, Semones said. Sheep Shows and Horse Shows have been moved from during the week to Sunday this year, while two local groups will sing gospel music on Sunday afternoon and Ronnie Collins will offer a sermon that day.

Another new event will be a horse pull on Saturday night, which will follow a tractor pull at the Grover King VFW Post 1115.

Even if you aren’t particularly interested in agriculture or farming, Semones said the fair offers a little something for everyone.

“It’s all centered around trying to educate folks about our agriculture and trying to get them involved, but it’s not all about agriculture. Hopefully there is something for everybody,” he said. “Anyone interested in photography or arts and crafts, or home canning, there will be classes in the VFW about all those things, and cooking contests as well.”

Semones said it’s the hope of the fair to give everyone a taste of what like was like in the area. Several local musicians and groups will perform, while there will be a pet show on Saturday afternoon. A Salsa Festival will be featured again this year on Sept. 20 showcasing Mexican culture, foods and music, while the Jubal Early Sons of the Confederate Veterans Chapter 1691 will talk about the Civil War and the hardships local citizens faced during that period.

There will also be a sheepdog demonstration, while local Animal Control Officer Terry Woods and other law enforcement personnel will do demonstrations with attack dogs and tracking dogs.

Forestry field events will be held for intermediate school-aged children, as well as an adult version. And while the fair will be filled with educational exhibits and demonstrations, there will also be plenty of family games and events.

“Just about anything in Carroll County is represented at the fair, that is our selling point. It doesn’t matter if you like painting or photography of whatever, it is in there somewhere,” Semones said. “We will have beef and dairy shows on Thursday night, a goat show on Friday night, and all your livestock in the county. There will be a stockman’s contest on Thursday afternoon.”

With such a wide range of events over the course of four days, the planning and manpower needed to take on such an event is massive. Semones wanted to thank everyone that volunteers their time, effort and money into making the fair possible, though there were just too many to name. Still, the fair committee is always in constant need of more volunteers.

“We always need more help. We have issues with parking and taking up gate money. It takes all of us to keep things running because there is something going on all the time,” Semones said. “We particularly have to thank the VFW for letting us use their property. A lot of folks have pitched in over the years and we thank each and every one of them for helping this thing continue to get better. Every year has its problems and every year has its successes. I hope we have learned from the failures and hope to make the successes a little better.”

A full list of times and events, as well as more detailed information on the fair, will be available in the Sept. 17 edition of The Carroll News.

Entry forms and more detailed information can also be found at .

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