Fair Kicks Off

MARIETTA – Despite high heat the annual Washington County Fair kicked off Saturday with a parade and plenty of fairway attractions and animal showings.

Fred Boyd, president of the Washington County Fair Board, said the fair aims to please.

“If you come to the fair you will see we have something for everybody,” he said. “This year we will have local bands, two a day through the fair and karaoke in the evening.”

Boyd said this year the rides on the fairway may look a little different, but he said it is not scaled back.

“We had the ride company we had last year and we have some different rides,” he said. “We have more in-the-air rides and it seems people like the in-the-air rides and that changed the layout of the midway so they are more together.”

Boyd said the new addition of lumber sports has done well. He added the fair changed to a different rodeo from previous years.

“We will have the Broken Horn Rodeo which is a new rodeo for us this year,” he said. “There wasn’t anything wrong with the last one but the board wanted to try some other group.”

Another new featuring coming in a fast track motocross on Monday and the Northeast Dukes, a stunt show, will be featured Monday night.

Boyd said the number was not available yet on how many animals are entered but he said the new building for rabbits, chickens, turkeys and geese appears to being doing well this year.

“That rabbit bard is full,” he said. “That new building is full, I’m told we have more than the normal number of exhibits. We also have more exhibits in the home arts area as well.”

This year a pie-baking contest has been added.

“It’s new,” he said. “We will judge them and have an auction.”

On Tuesday, the last day, the fair will be open to students from some of the elementary schools and from Ewing School.

“They will get to see the Grandpa Cratchett show and some of the rides will be open and free for them.”

Amy Auch, of Vienna, said she and her family came to see the animals and to get the ice cream at the fair on Saturday.

“Our kids like the farm animals, especially the bunnies,” she said. “We always get ice cream here; it’s really good.”

Shannon Wolfe, of Waterford, was showing sheep at the fair Saturday.

“I’m showing Oxford and Shropshire sheep,” she said. “I’ve been working with this since I was 5 and I’m 18 now.”

Wolfe said she has won a number of awards in the show.

“I’ve had grand champion ram lamb and got a first place ewe,” she said. “It varies depending on who the competition is.”

Beck Holmes, of Marietta, said she had not been to the fair much in recent years but liked what she saw on the first day.

“I haven’t come much since my kids were little,” she said Saturday. “My little granddaughter was in the princess contest so I came.

“The parade was nice.”

Dorothy Hesson, of Marietta, said she comes to the fair most years.

“I’ve put in my appearance,” she said Saturday. “I like to walk around and watch the people and eat. You always have to have your Italian sausage or something like that.”