Scott County Free Fair celebrates 70th Birthday!

This week, the Scott County Free Fair will celebrate its 70th Birthday!  Although the County Fair can be traced back to the early 1900s, it became official in 1947 with the formation of the Fair Board and the dedication of the new grounds and grandstand.

Happenings in early days of the Free Fair included many of the same events as today.  The Figure 8 races, a cross between demolition derby and racing, are the modern version of the Fair Race.  From Flowers and Fashion, Pies and Pastries, Ceramics and Crochet, many community members still show off their talents in Open Class Competitions.  The largest Open Class is the kids’ crafts, hobbies, and handiwork competitions.  Ribbons earn money:  Blue $3, Red, $2, and White $1 all thanks to the Scott County Fair Board!

A large part of fair events involve the local 4H clubs.  Their judging contests begin the week prior with the Dog Show and Hand Pets Show, Shooting Sports, and a Fashion Review.  Consultation judging begins Monday, July 17th, with Foods projects, Arts and Crafts, Quilting and Handicrafts, Electricity, Rocketry, Geology, Woodworking, Photography, and more. The week continues with livestock showing and sales.  4Hrs who receive a blue ribbon and higher qualify in most projects for the Kansas State Fair in September.

They are not kidding about the Free in their name!  There has never been an admissions fee to the fair making it a popular evening affair for the whole family.  Each year 1500 plus attend the Beefiesta, a free BBQ, and enjoy not only free food but also some sort of free entertainment.  Local Feedyards and businesses also provide a free Beef Tasting in the City Park on the last day of the fair.  This is a real crowd pleaser and an opportunity for the Feeders and Businesses to gain a year of bragging rights for the best tasting steak tid bit! 

The Fair Board also sponsors a free Kids Day that includes free prizes.  Kids of all ages enjoy egg toss contests, noodle races, greased pig contest, and a ping pong air drop.  Prizes include ribbons and trinkets up to iPods, Kindles, and Bicycles.

Families also enjoy the Saturday Parade.  Not only do viewers enjoy free giveaways like candy, caps, and cups, but also entertainment from the Shriners, Horse and Biker Clubs, Farm Equipment, Fire Trucks with Sirens, 4H floats, and local and state dignitaries.

This year’s Fair is not only marked by celebration but also with a memorial to long time Fair Board Member and President, Larry Dearden, who lost his battle with cancer this past April.  Larry was a very familiar face at the Scott County Free Fair.  He grew up in the Lake Wide Awake 4H club.  A dedicated leader of many 4H projects, Larry was a well loved and admired mentor to many kids over the years.  He is sorely missed by his family and our community.


Scott County Free Fair Schedule

Tuesday, July 11
6:30 p.m. 4-H & Open Dog Show
6:30 p.m. Hand Pet/Cat Show

Wednesday, July 12
Deadline: 4-H Horse entries

Thursday, July 13
1 :00 p.m. 4-H Fashion Revue Judging, Methodist Church
7:00p.m. Public 4-H Fashion Show,
Baker Hall Methodist Church

Sunday, July 16
10 a.m. Prairie Land Church
Fairgrounds awning pavilion
Fellowship lunch to follow

Monday, July 17
9:00 am. 4-H Consultation Judging for Foods,
Clothing Construction, Visual Art, Space Tech,
Photography, Electricity, Geology, and Woodworking -.
Wm. Carpenter 4-H Building

Tuesday, July 18
8:00 a.m.-8 p.m. Booth Construction
9:00a.m. 4-H Horse Show
5-7:00 p.m. Weigh in livestock
6:30 p.m. Scott County Barrel Racing Contest
7:00 p.m. Scott County Roping Contest

Wednesday, July 19
7:30-10:00 a.m. Enter exhibits
9:00 a.m. Rabbit/Poultry Show
6:00 p.m. Cow Pie Bingo
5:00 p.m. Beef Judging, Show Ring
7:00 p.m. Figure 8 Race, Grandstand
9:30 p.m. Exhibit Buildings Close

Thursday, July 20
8:30-10:00 a.m. Flower Show Entries,
8:00 a.m. Swine Judging, Show Ring
5:00 p.m. Goat Judging, Show Ring
6:00 p.m. Watermelon Feed
sponsored by American AgCredit
6:00 p.m. Beefiesta BBQ
7:00 p.m. Sheep Judging, Show Ring
7:00 p.m. KPRA Rodeo, Grandstand
9:30 p.m. Exhibit Buildings Close
Carnival — Weee Entertainment

Friday, July 21
9:00 a.m. Round Robin Showmanship
5:30 p.m Livestock Buyers Supper
6:30 p.m. 4-H Livestock & Champion
Foods Premium Auction
7:00 p.m. Kids Day with Ping Pong
Ball Drop & Pedal Tractor
Pull, Grandstand
9:30 p.m. Exhibit Buildings Close
Carnival — Weee Entertainment

Saturday, July 22
10:00 a.m. Parade, Main Street
12-2:00 p.m. Tasting Booths, City Park
2:00 p.m. Barnyard Olympics, Grandstand
3-4:00 p.m. Release All Exhibits
7:30p.m. The Tones, Wm Carpenter 4-HBuilding
9:00p.m.-12:00 a.m. Fair Dance
music by The Tones
Carnival – Weee Entertainment

Schedule Subject to Change

Author: Stephanie Fisher

Photos: Scott County Historical Society, Scott County Free Fair

Stephanie Fisher holds a degree in Communications from the University of New Hampshire.  She grew up in Scott City where she now lives with her family of 5.  Stephanie is the Program Director and Docent at the El Quartelejo Museum and Jerry Thomas Gallery and Collection where she shares her love for history and community.