It was not a decision anyone on the Carter County Fair Board wanted to make, although ultimately they felt a decision had to be made regarding plans for this year’s county fair.
Wednesday’s vote to cancel the 2020 fair was unanimous “But, one that nobody was happy about,” according to fair board member Jill York, who discussed the decision while seated on the asphalt of the parking lot behind All Creatures Veterinary Care with fellow board members “Doc” and Cindy Gibson.
The Carter County Fair has faced challenges “from flood to mud,” they agreed, however, “This is something we can’t outrun and can’t out plan,” York said.
In addition to safety concerns, “Doc” Gibson said the real-world finances of the fair had to be taken into consideration.
“The biggest thing is safety for everybody and the next thing is we draw from local small business – without them, there is no fair,” the local veterinarian said. “We felt it was unfair to ask them to support the fair when they have been out of business.”
York notes local fair boards statewide have little to compare their situations to, and had hoped for guidance from Kentucky State Fair officials, who still have not made an official announcement about that event.
On the local level, Cindy Gibson points out things like demolition derbies and motocross events have “to be lined up” and often partially paid for in advance.
“We had already pushed back and hoped for a light at the end of the tunnel … fair planning is almost a year-round thing,” Doc added.
Fair board members have not ruled out the possibility of a less traditional gathering or event at the local fairgrounds, located just west of Grayson.
“This is the summer of disappointments. From sports to funerals – nothing is normal,” she observed.
Story and Photos by TIM PRESTON
Carter County Post