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Heat takes toll but fair week ends with old-time favorites

Heat takes toll but fair week ends with old-time favorites
Heat takes toll but fair week ends with old-time favorites
Madison Summers, 8, of Corydon cools off under a large spray of water Thursday night at the Harrison County Fair. Playing in the water behind her is Cassidy Blank, 7, also of Corydon. (Photo by Jo Ann Spieth-Saylor)

Last week’s heat and humidity may have kept attendance down slightly at the annual Harrison County Fair, but Steve Haggard was thankful it didn’t rain.
‘It was pretty hot,’ he said, ‘but I was happy with it.’
The fair, now 147 years old, is sponsored by the Harrison County Agricultural Society.
Temperatures in the upper 90s with a heat index over 100 took its toll on some livestock during the week. A swine died on opening day, July 30, and some rabbits died Thursday.
A few humans were treated for heat exhaustion during the week.
Faulty wiring on a fan being used in one of the livestock barns was to blame for a boy being shocked during the week, Haggard said. The boy was taken to Harrison County Hospital in Corydon, where he was kept overnight for observation. He returned to the fair the following day, Haggard said.
Monday’s attendance remained about the same as in past years, thanks to the Demolition Derby, as was Wednesday, when the grandstand act was the karaoke contest.
Haggard, fair board president, said Tuesday’s attendance was down some.
‘We had a traditional show (with Fred Schuppert & Victory) that older people would have loved,’ he said, but he believes the heat and humidity kept many of them in their air-conditioned homes.
Attendance was back up the last three days ‘ Thursday, Friday and Saturday ‘ with the big draws being the mini car roll-over and demo derby, and the annual truck and tractors pulls.
‘If we didn’t have the temperatures that we had, we would have had a great turnout,’ Haggard said. ‘The heat made it a tough fair.’
A new draw for the fair, musical entertainment near the Midway, seemed to be a hit. Local talent, including some non-musical acts, was featured on Thursday and Friday nights.
The preliminary rounds for the karaoke contest were held there Monday and Tuesday nights. Clayton Hughes, who organized the contest, said they had 30 to 40 contestants every night.
Twenty-six adults and 10 youth, ages 15 and under, advanced to the finals.
‘We had a lot of good singers,’ Hughes said. ‘The whole week went well.’
Hughes said the location of the stage near the Midway may have helped keep some fairgoers there longer. And about 1,000 young people came to the fair Saturday night for performances by Wasted Days and Evil Engine No. 9.
He said they are planning to offer the same type of entertainment next year, but will ‘tweak’ the location of the stage, which early in the week blocked one of the doors to the Merchants Building.
The calling contests were held again this year, after making a return appearance last year. On Friday night, Walter Reimold of Corydon won the hog-calling contest, a title he’s held locally as well as at the state level numerous times. Martin Hobbs, Corydon, won the cattle-calling contest, while Myra Schultz of Elizabeth was the winner of this year’s chicken-calling event.
Haggard welcomed appearances by Gov. Mitch Daniels and Baron Hill, Democratic congressional candidate for the Ninth District. Hill paid the most ‘ $600 ‘ for an apple pie baked by Anna Beanblossom, during the Homemakers’ annual pie contest on Thursday.
Judy Sieg’s pie, purchased by State Rep. Paul Robertson for $80, was second, while C.J. Lowe’s third-place pie was purchased by Ryan Funk for $45.
The Homemakers netted $2,065 to be used for scholarships from the 30 pies entered. Last year’s contest, with 25 pies, raised $1,393.
Holley Wilkinson of Corydon won a scooter Saturday night during a drawing for 14 year olds and younger.