Sun sets on another Floyd County Fair; eyes now on the future
By Kelly Terpstra, email@example.com
A year from now, the Floyd County Fairgrounds should look vastly different.
As the county fair wrapped up over the weekend, fair officials recollected what had been accomplished this year, and what lies ahead.
Craig Anderson stood outside the beef and swine barn on Friday in the sunny 90-degree weather.
“I think all things considered, we’re pretty happy with how it’s gone,” said Anderson, the Floyd County Fair Board treasurer.
The Memorial Day tornado two months earlier brought destruction that leveled buildings. The fair board will meet next month to begin moving forward to provide more fairs for decades to come.
“I think there’s a lot of us that really feel like with what’s happened — it wasn’t the easiest thing to overcome. But we’re going to get through this week. Next month, we start planning and I think we’ve all kind of got the eye on we can have one of the best fairgrounds in the state,” Anderson said.
The brick building and the 4-H building were destroyed when the tornado ripped through the fairgrounds. The horticulture building, which also saw extensive damage from high winds, will be taken down relatively soon.
“I don’t know if we’re going to combine purposes on some buildings,” said Anderson. “I don’t think we’re going to go building for building right back to where we were. We’ve just got to match our purpose.”
Tents were utilized for certain shows and activities at the fair last week. The temporary shelters provided escape from the scorching sun that produced heat indexes of well over 100 degrees on consecutive days.
The youth enrichment center, not even three years old, provided a home base and place to cool down for many fairgoers.
Brainstorming about the look and feel of the new fair will begin in earnest sometime in August.
“We’re looking for ideas, quite honestly,” said Anderson. “We want to make sure we vet every idea we can. I feel like we have a big responsibility on us to make sure that we have the most foresight we can and put it back together the right way.”
The annual fair is an important aspect of general use for the fairgrounds, but Anderson said the site is also used as a rental or multi-purpose facility as well.
“We’ve got to keep that in mind,” he said.
Anderson said he appreciates the many acts of volunteerism that helped get this year’s fair up and running. He hopes that can continue in the future.
“Now with some insurance proceeds and we’ve already seen support from the community. I won’t be surprised if that continues to the point where we can do what we want,” he said.
The goal is to have everything in place and built by the time the 2020 Floyd County Fair rolls around.
“We can dream big, but we’ve got to spend smart,” said Anderson.