Fair plans moving forward… for now

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By Carol McIntire
Editor
The Carroll County Ag Society (fair board) is moving forward with plans for the 2020 fair.
In light of coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the 2020 Ohio county fair schedule remains in limbo. Governor Mike DeWine said during his April 21 press conference officials “will continue to evaluate how, and if, we can safely operate Ohio fairs in 2020.”
Members noted during the meeting, which, conducted via teleconference with members sitting in different rooms of the secretary’s office, the Harrison County Ag Society is moving forward with plans for the 2020 fair, which is scheduled in June. Board officials noted they will follow all recommendations and guidelines set by the Ohio Department of Agriculture for the operation of the fair.
The board signed a contract with Derby Dog to conduct the 2020 demolition derby on July 25 at a cost of $2,200. The board is responsible for paying the purse, which totaled $6,500 for five classes in 2019. The board receives all entry fees and the money from pit passes. Last year those two items totaled $3,365.
Joe Krantz agreed to manage the ATV Rodeo, scheduled the morning of July 22, but declined an offer to host dirt track races Wednesday evening. The possibility of hosting another type of races Wednesday was discussed, but tabled until next month. Members scheduled a demonstration of the races prior to the May 19 meeting.
Also approved were fair-related expenditures of $200 for the Huff’s Racing Guide and $180 for track insurance. Both will be reimbursed.

Superintendent of Speed Wayne Ferguson received approval to notify the State Harness Horse Association the board is willing to host harness racing without spectators if the fair is not held.
An affidavit was approved banning the product commonly known as paylean from the fair as per a request from ODA. All junior fair members who plan to exhibit swine will be notified.
Sandy Smith, OSU extension agent, notified the board via telephone, the extension office is closed through July 6 and cannot conduct any in-person training. She noted ODA dropped the requirement that junior fair members complete quality assurance training 45 days prior to the fair and the training is being conducted virtually through a program known as Zoom. She is planning to have in-person training July 6.
Smith also noted interviews are scheduled May 6 for the 4-H educator position, in spite of a hiring freeze imposed by the Ohio State University.
In an unrelated matter, the board agreed to apply for the Agricultural Society Facilities Grant Program. DeWine announced April 21 ODA waived the required $50,000 local match for the program. The funds are to help fairs pay for necessary facilities and grounds improvements. Carroll County will apply for the funds to help with the construction of a new junior fair barn.

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