Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877

Fair financial report shows rain impact


October 31, 2019

Palouse Empire Fair board members received a financial report which reflected the impact from the rain storm which doused the grounds on the last day of the fair. The fair’s gate revenues were down $4,692 from the previous year for a drop of about seven percent, and the attendance total was down 1,259 from the previous year.

Proceeds from the carnival were down $652 from the previous year, Fair Administrator Bill Tensfeld reported to fair board members at Monday night’s meeting.

The Sunday rain hit after the fair marked a strong day at the gate on the previous day and that offset some of rain loss the following day.

Tensfeld reported this year’s edition of the fair attracted an increase of 28 exhibits over the previous year and 14 more exhibitors.

The state fair commissioner graded the fair at 70 percent, a gain of two percent from last year. The fair’s listed shortcomings included lack of adult entries and demonstrations.

Fair board members also discussed problems with space in the parking area on the east side of the grounds. Continued growth of RV parking at the fair has consumed space in the parking area. One problem encountered this year was the space required for vehicles used by the families in the RV units.

Another part of the parking problem was finding space for rodeo contestants who arrived with RV units.

Board member Eric Appel noted access to the fair’s sawdust pile, which is used by livestock exhibitors, was sometimes obstructed by vehicle parking.

One proposal mentioned was removal of the fair’s junk pile located on the far north end of the grounds to create more space. Tensfeld said plans are in the works to remove the junk pile next year.

Prior to the fair board session, the fair’s livestock sale committee authorized fabrication of eight stands to wash goats during the run of the fair. The stands will have rails on each side. The goat washing area will be located near the hog washing area.

Goat exhibitors have been bringing their own stands to wash their entries. Both goats and hogs can require multiple wash downs during a day at the fair.


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