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127th annual fair a success despite rainfall

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Rain could not dampen the fun and excitement surrounding the 127th annual Dauphin Agricultural Society (DAS) Fair and Exhibition, this past weekend.
The rain did end up cancelling Friday and Saturday’s chuckwagon races and the chariot races on Saturday, as well as Sunday’s demolition derby and some horse hitch classes.
“We always try and bring in all-weather events, that can happen no matter what kind of weather. The stock dog trials made it through. They can go rain or shine,” said DAS president Ben Fox.
The parade went ahead despite a downpour, Saturday morning, but it did not dampen the enthusiasm of those who braved the rain to watch, or those who traveled through the streets of Dauphin as part of the parade.
“We had no problem putting it on and I think the folks that went out and saw it were treated to a nice parade,” Fox said, adding as a whole, the fair was quite good.
Things got off to a good start, Thursday before the fair started, with a record-setting market lamb sold at the 4-H sale, Thursday evening.
“When we can sell a lamb for $30 a pound, that’s pretty impressive,” Fox said.
When Mother Nature co-operated and provided sunshine and wonderful weather, the fair was well attended.
“We’re quite happy. It’s going to be pretty much be break-even. It’s not a wreck by any means and it’s not an overwhelming huge success, either. We kind of got a show put together where we can handle some adversity and still come out on top,” Fox said.
A new attraction at this year’s fair was the Flying Fools High Diving Show, which featured a group of people performing dives from various heights, which seemed to go over well with the crowd.
“That as a great addition to the fair and we’re going to continue to look at acts like that just to bring in some variety, some things that people don’t get to see anywhere else, because there haven’t been many high-diving acts brought anywhere close to this area,” Fox said.
“So we’re going to continue to look at stuff like that and build on successes and maybe put some investment into the grounds and have it where we can have a demo derby no matter how much rain we get.”
Fox added DAS felt bad about having to cancel the demolition derby.
“It’s something that we look forward to just as much as the competitors and the spectators. So we’re going to look at putting some investment into the track and getting it so it can happen no matter what,” he added.
The DAS board will look at possibly holding the derby at a later date.
“It takes a pretty good effort on folks’ behalf to get everything organized. So we’re sure not ruling it out at this point,” Fox said.
This year’s fair and exhibition was moved back a day, running Friday to Sunday instead of the traditional Thursday to Saturday.
Fox said the midway was available Friday to Sunday, so DAS thought a change would allow people more flexibility in their schedules to attend the fair.
“We’re hopeful that move enabled the community to attend and enjoy themselves,” he said, adding they will look at continuing to run the fair from Friday to Sunday.
“But the variable in that scenario is whether the midway can make that work in their travel schedule.”
Fox wishes to thank all of the sponsors for their support of the fair. It was a good event, he said, despite the rain, with tremendous weather when it was not raining.
“And it was a good show. Our exhibitors are happy to come back. We keep getting comments that it’s a good fair. And all the visitors that come through here. Folks are happy to bring their families through here, so we take pride in that and we hope to put on a better fair next year. So big thanks to the sponsors,” he said.

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Doug Zywina
REPORTER
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