Dawes Co Fair Board Preparing For COVID-Slimmed Event

CHADRON – Dawes County Agricultural Society, more commonly known as the Fair Board, holds its annual budget meeting tonight at 6:00 at the 4-H building.

The meeting comes as work continues on a new small animal building to replace the old show barn, lost to a spring blizzard two years ago. Work on the building began in March using the same space at the old barn.

The Fair Board also continues to make coronavirus-related adjustments to the 134th Dawes County Fair, which runs July 24-Aug 1 with the theme “Fairadise – Let the Good Times Grow”.

Several activities have been cancelled because of the close proximity or number of participants including interview judging for static exhibits, bottle lamb, and bucket calf.

Both the free BBQ and the Fair Dance are currently barred by the state’s coronavirus Directed Health Measures, while some cancellations are statewide from Nebraska Extension including no Small and Large Animal Education Hour, no Fun with 4-H, and no Champion and State Fair large group pictures.

Changes to the Dawes County Fair 4-H schedule has 4-H Static Exhibits open Tuesday 8:00 am with their Auction starting at noon, Swine Weigh-Ins from 8-9:30 am, Sheep and Goat Weigh-ins from 9:30-11 am, and the Livestock Buyers Social 5:30-6 pm

Panhandle COVID-19 Unified Command is reminding the planners and attendees of all larger events such as the Dawes County Fair that it’s critical they abide by COVID-19 prevention strategies.

For organizers like the Fair Board, that means planning for spacing of attendees to effectively practice six-foot social distancing, discouraging areas of large crowds congregating, encouraging the wearing of masks, and highly accessible opportunities to frequently wash or sanitize hands.

Unified Command says screenings such as temperature and symptoms checks for event staff and volunteers, and encouraging all attendees to stay home if they are experiencing any symptoms or are at high-risk for complications from COVID-19 helps keep everyone safe during this time.

Unified Command says everyone has a responsibility to keep our communities safe and the common goal of getting kids back to school, with keeping case counts and hospitalizations low the key to communities moving forward during the COVID-19 pandemic