Edmonson Voice Staff
As September nears, Edmonson County residents begin looking forward to Labor Day cookouts, football season, and the fair, sponsored by the Edmonson County Lions Club. The club's fair board chairman Mike Blanton says that the organization is busy preparing for 2014's fair that is estimated to have around 10,000 visitors throughout the duration of the event. According to Blanton, a new company has been contracted for the rides and attractions in the carnival. "The old carnival would not cooperate with us, or bring the kind of rides we asked for," he said. "We lost a lot of high school students and older kids and families because the rides weren't big enough. We just couldn't deal with them anymore." He also said that the quality of the attractions from the Florida-based company had steadily declined over the years and the Lions Club was able to find a better company near the Owensboro area. Blanton said that fair-goers can expect bigger rides and more of them. "We've had complaints about the rides over the last few years, but we couldn't do anything about it. We were under contract and they (the Florida company) quit doing a good job with the rides."
This year's fair kicks off Thursday, September 4, with one of two beauty pageants, where admission cost will be $5 per person. There will be no carnival rides until Tuesday, Sept 9, at which admission will increase to $10 per person, but that includes unlimited rides at the carnival. The Lions Club spends over $40,000 putting on the fair each year, with hopes of making enough in return to fund the numerous charity events that they sponsor throughout the year. Blanton says no member of the club is paid anything and that every dime stays in the county. Charity drives funded by the club include eye glasses for the needy, a $1000 scholarship, a co-sponsor of the annual parks and rec fireworks show, the school-wide backpack food program, a new coat for each and every Head Start student, and around $2000 for the Christmas Angel program. The Lions Club is much more than guys wearing yellow vests at the fair. They are dedicated men that work all year round making sure that not only the needs of the fair are met, but also so many other needs of Edmonson County. Stay connected for a preview of each event in a few days.