Small Town Fair: Big Time Fun

 Photos and Video by Russ Baldwin – Click on a picture to see a larger version of the image.

Sights and sounds from this year’s Sand and Sage Fair at the Prowers County Fairgrounds ranged from the Sunday, August 7 concert, featuring Mark Wills and Katie Armiger to the Monday night Gymkhana sponsored by the Vaqueros Saddle Club. Tuesday was special for the families in Prowers County, as well as those visiting families from around the country, in town for the Softball Babe Ruth World Series games just up the road at the Sports Complex.

Although the Friday BBQ numbers were down somewhat, everybody in town decided to go off their diet by Saturday, and the lines were long and food servers were kept busy, piling on the beef and beans, chips and buns. The iced tea and ice cream concession was busy as well as folks were taking care of their appetites before the final PRCA rodeo that night. Two area residents were honored for their accomplishments in agriculture and for years of service to the fair and rodeo. John Ogden was awarded with a plaque by Mark Carrigan and the Prowers County Commissioners, all front and center in the arena. The Ernie Hoffmeister award this year was presented to Jodi States for her work in youth and ag oriented pursuits. The Parade of Champions in the fairgrounds arena took place just prior to the rodeo on Saturday evening.

Kid’s day was Wednesday which featured the Sun Valley Carnival Rides and free computer games through the week, from the IGX Gaming System set up under the grandstand. Youngsters enjoyed the free noon lunch, and everyone got in the act with the Pizza Fest sponsored by Little Caesar’s between 5 and 7pm.

The Lamar FFA members made sure early morning fairgoers didn’t go hungry, with their annual breakfast on Thursday and Friday from 6 to 9am at the Home Ec Building. The annual barrel racing competition got their start at 6pm that evening, just about two hours ahead of the swift moving rains that swept through Prowers County that night.

The Lamar FFA and 4-H Goat show was held under the pavilion on Friday morning and continued into the afternoon. Youngsters and adults alike took their best shot at getting the water running in the concrete ditch just off the seats at the fairgrounds arena. For a while, the manual irrigators were moving more water than the ditch feeder pump, but fairgrounds staff got that working in short order again for the contestants.

A young girl, saddled and holding the American flag aloft, made numerous runs around the arena with some country western music providing the background, as she prepared for the upcoming parade of champions set for 7pm Saturday night. The PRCA rodeo that night featured a yearly crowd pleaser, mutton bustin’.

There’s nothing like going boating on a hot summer day. A new attraction, a kayak pond sponsored by Walmart, allowed young and old, but mostly young, to wrap a life jacket around themselves, fit themselves into a kayak and paddle and skedaddle around a two foot deep pond to their heart’s content. The pond sets up quickly and has been a popular attraction, according to members of the Fair Board. They hinted there might be one more final use for the pond at the close of the fair, but played their cards close to their chest on that score! Saturday evening was perfect for a night at the carnival, as families and youngsters waited their turn to climb aboard a ride, or dig in to some chili-cheese curly fries, or funnel cakes topped with a pile of powdered sugar.

By Russ Baldwin


Filed Under: AgricultureArtBusinessChamber/Local BusinessCommissionerscommunityCountyEconomyEducationEntertainmentFeaturedFestivalLamarRecreationYouth


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