By Per Peterson
As secretary of the Lyon County Fair Board, Deloris Richards has a lot to keep track of. And she is confident the work she and the rest of the fair board members have put into the 2019 Lyon County Fair will pay off this weekend.
The Lyon County Fair opens today (Wednesday) at the fairgrounds in Marshall.
“We start planning for the fair right after this year’s fair is over,” Richards said. “I’ve been involved since I was 10 years old and first showed in 4-H. I guess I just stayed with it.”
As recently as this past April, fair organizers were still on the hunt for a carnival for the five-day festival. Thankfully for fairgoers, a contract for the Todd Armstrong Show was signed in June, meaning another crowded midway is expected for the 116th annual fair. With the carnival this year comes rides such as Zero Gravity, Wiggle Worm, Tornado, Tea Time, VW Cars, Ring of Fire, Super Shot, Charlie Chopper and Fun Slide.
“(Fair board chair) Wally (Wichmann) put a lot of work into finding a carnival,” Richards said. “Everybody has been working really hard to get everything organized, because there are a lot of new things this year.”
Some of those new things include a circus (with people, not animals) and a “Spin-tacular Basketball Show,” which features Bruce and Diane Creiver and their 12 children. The family was a finalist on America’s Got Talent, and according to the fair website, their halftime show has been touted as one of the most entertaining shows in the country — they have performed at halftime shows during the NBA Finals in 2015 and 2016. The family has also performed at more than 1,000 public and private schools, colleges, camps and churches. They will perform twice at the Hoop Barn on Saturday: from 1-2 p.m. and 3-4 p.m.
Los Moralitos Circus will also be performing Thursday-Saturday; there is no admission to those shows. The show features clowns, aerialists, high jumping, tumbling, unicycles, hula hoops and more. The shows will be 5:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 8; 6 p.m., 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 9; and 4 p.m., 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 10.
The Ralco Enrichment Center will be open at 10 a.m. each day of the fair. Silly Miss Tilly will return to the fair this year as well, and will entertain crowds at 5 p.m. on Aug. 7, and 10 a.m. on other fair days.
The Barnes PRCA Rodeo will grab the spotlight at Second Chance Arena at 7 p.m. on both Thursday and Friday. Rodeo events include bareback bronc riding, bull riding, cowgirl’s barrel racing, junior barrel racing, saddle bronc racing, steer wrestling and tie down roping. There is also a boot scramble event for the kids.
A musical highlight of the fair will be a free Life Light Festival on Wednesday, Aug. 7, featuring Sanctus Real, Cade Thompson, Bread Of Stone, DJ Peacock, Jonathan Stone, BMX and Josh Brewer. The concert will be from 5-9:30 p.m.
On Thursday, Aug. 8, the Hoop Barn will be home to an educational agricultural magic show. Showtimes are 1 p.m., 3 p.m. and 5 p.m.
Rolle Bolle will also be taking place each day of the fair. On Friday, Aug. 9, and Saturday, Aug. 10, at 5 p.m., Danzig the Hypnotist will perform, and at 1 p.m. on Saturday, there will be a Lego building contest.
Also on Saturday, the demolition derby will begin at 7 p.m. at the Grandstand, with a number of different payouts.
Richards said buses will be available to drive people to the fair all weekend. Buses will pick up fairgoers from Hill Street, Boulder Estates, the Senior Center and Heritage Place from 8 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
“It’s something new, and we hope to keep it going,” she said.
Saturday will be Senior Citizens Day at the fair, and the Colors will be presented by American Legion Post 113 at 10:30 a.m. at the Hoop Barn, followed by a speech from Lyon County Veteran Service Officer Heidi Fier.