From touching stingrays, seeing a tiger to being part of a magic show, or honoring fallen military heroes, the 108th Stanislaus County Fair did not disappoint this year as it brought in crowds from various places to educate themselves about science and agriculture while having fun.
Residents picked the Stanislaus County Fair as their destination for the summer as the fair drew in over 260,000 guests during its 10-day run, a 16 percent increase from 2018. The Fair opened on Friday, July 12 and concluded its annual run on Sunday, July 21. Fair concessions were up nine percent and Butler Amusement, the fair ride operator, was up 2.5 percent compared to 2018.
“This year was a good overall year with a lot of people coming out for the diverse entertainment,” said Matt Cranford, chief executive officer of the Stanislaus County Fair.
Highlights of the 2019 Fair included Jeff Goldblum visiting the Stanislaus County Fair to film his new show called “The Curiosity of Jeff Goldblum” with National Geographic. The filming took place inside the FoodMaxx Arena, while Goldblum discussed the history of motorhomes and took part in the motorhome derby event. The fair also featured a Stingray Exhibit; Walkin’ the Wild exhibit; the empowHER Lounge; Gossamer Magic and Illusion Show; Remember the Fallen Exhibit; the Baby Care Center; and the return of 4H Farmhouse experience. Another success for the 2019 Fair was the 3,590 children who signed up for the Kids Club program and completed educational passports for a chance to win four Legoland tickets from KAT.
Guests enjoyed the Fair’s Free ‘Til 3 p.m. on Sundays. Over 47,000 guests took advantage on both Sundays to attend the Fair for free until 3 p.m.
Nearly 30,000 individual entries were exhibited at the 2019 Fair, from orchids and quilts to rabbits and market hogs.
“The true mark of a fair’s success is in the positive exhibitor participation and making sure our guests are happy,” said Adrenna Alkhas, spokesperson for the Stanislaus County Fair. “Our exhibits program is a staple at our fair going down so many generations of families exhibiting at the fair. We are very proud of our exhibit program and it is what sets us apart from other fairs in the state.”
Livestock increased in entry numbers with total gross sale of animals sold at the fair auctions exceeding over $1.3 million. Future Farmers of America (FFA) and 4-H members sold 98 heifers at the 51st Annual Replacement Heifer Sale, grossing $305,650 ($3,151 per head). Supreme Champion was Isabella Pires, from Wood Colony 4-H, selling her heifer at $10,500. Reserve Supreme Champion was Kylie Kriese, from Gregori FFA, selling her heifer at $5,000.
The 55th Annual Junior Livestock Auction grossed $1,064,082 for FFA and 4-H members. Sold at auction were 26 rabbits, 179 goats, 146 sheep, 365 swine, and 53 steers. The 55th Annual Market Beef auction grossed at $295,987.
The excitement of seven nights of motorsports, and three nights of rodeo in the FoodMaxx Arena were welcomed by Fair guests. Both destruction derbies were also well attended.
All the 10 free celebrity concerts on the Coors Light Variety Free Stage were very well received. High Valley; Blood, Sweat & Tears; Ulices Chaidez; Maddie & Tae; En Vogue; Clay Walker; Marshall Tucker Band; Magic!; 98 Degrees; and Roberto Tapia drew in large crowds.
The mission of the Stanislaus County Fair is to provide a family and community-oriented experience promoting agriculture, entertainment and technology. For more information about the Stanislaus County Fair, go to www.stancofair.com.