Sunny skies prevail for day 2 of fair

The fairgrounds are seen Thursday afternoon on day two of the 2019 Fonda Fair. (The Leader-Herald/Josh Bovee)


— After a rainy start on opening day, blue skies and warm weather lent a more summery vibe to “Thrifty Thursday” as fair-goers bustled about, filling carnival rides and snack lines on day two of the 178th annual Fonda Fair on Thursday.

“[Wednesday] was a little bit damp,” said Richard Kennedy, president of the Fonda Fair Board. “But we had good attendance for a rainy day.”

Thursday’s sunshine made day two of the fair an all together different experience, as fair-goers took part in the many activities planned for “Thrifty Thursday,” including a baby contest; horse, beef and swine shows; a tractor driving competition and both a rodeo and a demolition derby.

“We have a lot going on every day this year, and we have more vendors and concessions than we’ve had in previous years,” Kennedy said.

Kennedy said Thursday afternoon that the evening’s rodeo was set to be “the biggest rodeo that we’ve had, as far as participants.”

This year’s fair also offers visitors several new attractions, including a race car simulator featuring local Fonda Speedway cars, which is free for people to participate in, as well as a wood carving station and a living history area with exhibits on early regional blacksmiths, brew makers and medicine men.

Kennedy also emphasized the agricultural attractions, noting the Fonda Fair’s history of promoting agriculture throughout the region. From pony rides, to chicken and rabbit showings, to a dairy cow exhibit, the grounds were filled on Thursday with opportunities for fair-goers to interact with animals while learning about the agricultural practices of the region.

“Actually, the official name of the Fonda Fair board is the Montgomery County Agricultural Society, and we have an agricultural awareness building with information on local 4-H groups that are involved in the community,” Kennedy said.

But for many, the rides themselves remained the main attraction, and Thursday’s reduced priced wristbands for rides ensured that kids could spin, swing, slide and bounce to their hearts’ content.

“My favorite is The Zipper,” said John Sheldon, while enjoying a candy apple with triplet brothers Jack and Jacob, along with friends Issac Saltsman, Theresa Stewart, Thomas Taylor and Wyatt Wilmot. Brother Jack preferred The Super Loop.

Meanwhile, others packed the stands and cheered away for the 3 p.m. showing of Rosaire’s Royal Racer’s pig racing competitions, where the No. 5 swine, Oscar Meyer, took home the gold in heat one — his prize, along with all the other piglets, a vanilla filled cream puff.

The Fonda Fair will continue today with “Midnight Madness” and “Pet Adoption Awareness Day,” and will feature reduced admission for senior citizens and free admission for children 14 and younger. There will be a 4-H Dairy Goat Show at 9 a.m.; a baby contest for one and two year olds at 11 a.m.; a four-wheel drive truck pull at 1 p.m.; and a four-wheel drive gas truck pull at 7 p.m., among other events.

The Fonda Fair is set to run through Monday with the annual Convoy for a Cause parade taking place on Sunday with 100 percent of registration and donation fees going to charities.

“Over the past six years we’ve raised over $70,000 to give to local charities,” Kennedy said.

Kennedy on Thursday gave thanks to the many volunteers that help make the Fonda Fair a success.

“We are very grateful for all of the volunteers that make the fair happen, and of course to the visitors,” Kennedy said.

By Patricia Older

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