County fair will have rides

By Gary Huffenberger -

WILMINGTON — There will be amusement rides at the Clinton County Fair after all, the Fair Board directors have announced.

In fact, for the first time in several years there will be a Ferris wheel on site.

The Clinton County Agricultural Society (Fair Board) contracted with Lisko Family Midway Amusements Inc. out of Lowellville, Ohio to provide the rides for the 2020 Clinton County Fair.

There will be roughly the same number of rides as last summer, said Clinton County Agricultural Society President Scot Gerber.

When the Fair Board on June 1 originally announced plans to go ahead and hold a fair, the Ag Society said there would be no rides due to last year’s ride company’s inability to economically operate their business with several fair cancellations on their route.

Gerber on Tuesday said Lisko Family Midway Amusements is working closely with Triple Treat Shows, the amusement ride, games and food provider that provided the rides for the 2019 Clinton County Fair.

All grandstand events, such as the demolition derby, tractor pulls, dirt drags and harness racing, are scheduled to take place, said Gerber.

“All the grandstand events will happen. We will be practicing social distancing, and there are some capacity limits that we’re working with, and those could be changing some so we’re working with what we currently have right now,” the Ag Society president said.

The current grandstand guideline is for a 50 percent capacity. However, there is a total maximum of 2,500 allowed for grandstand area seating or event seating so that there could be some track seating or seating on the backside or infield, Gerber said.

“As of now, unless we get some sort of information come down from the state, we are working closely with the health department and the sheriff’s department and the [county] commissioners to make sure that we are going to put on as close to a normal fair, with all the safety precautions and the COVID-19 guidelines, as best we can,” said Gerber.

The fairgrounds during fair week should look very normal, he said, with the differences including a lot of signage and information, and a lot of verbal announcements, to keep people practicing social distancing, he said.

The Fair Board president asks that everybody be patient and understand “that this is a monumental task.” The Fair Board members and volunteers are in constant discussion and meetings, he added.

“And all we can do is our best to put every effort to protect everybody the best we can along with having a good, sound event,” said Gerber.

He added he greatly appreciates that the county health department, local law enforcement, and county officials are being very understanding and very willing to support and help put the program together.

Admission will be $10 at the gate and will include rides. You will need to take the admission ticket you receive at the gate to the ticket booth to receive your ride pass. Children who are admitted free at the gate (5 and younger) will be charged $5 at the ticket booth to purchase a ride pass.

Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768.

By Gary Huffenberger