ELEANOR, W.Va. (WOWK) – The Putnam County Fair kicks off Saturday morning and runs through Saturday, July 20th, 2019. Ten dollars will get you inside the gate, which opens at 8 AM each day; it covers your admission, rides, and entertainment.
You wouldn’t notice it today, but the Putnam County Fairgrounds were under five feet of water just a few months ago. Now, the dry grounds are expecting 25,000 people to come out for the fair’s 40th anniversary.
“It means more than just a week of fair,” said Edainah Young, who is this year’s Miss Putnam County Fair Queen. “It means family and fun and my life pretty much.”
The fan favorites at the fair are the rodeo and the demolition derby.
“That’s always a fun, exciting night when you see cars crashing into each other,” said Putnam County Fair Board President Krista Snodgrass.
The fair will also have new entertainment, including “Rhinestone Roper,” which is a wild west trick show featuring horses.
The “Rhinestone Roper” will be going on from Saturday until Wednesday. Then on Thursday, the fair will have professional wrestling.
New rides are also coming to the fair, including bumper cars. According to Snodgrass, this year the fair will have more rides than ever before.
However, the fair will also feature educational opportunities and 180 animals.
“Anybody in this barn from the 9-year-olds all the way up to the 21-year-olds will talk to you about any animal in this barn, and they will gladly do it,” said Young.
“If you come into the barn, you’re going to find someone you know or you’re going to find open arms for someone to welcome you in here,” said Maddie Gillispie, who has been showing market hogs for two years.
Gillispie hopes she can inspire others to learn more about agriculture.
“I fell in love with it, so I can’t wait to see other kids fall in love with it, too,” she said.
Young, on the other hand, has been coming to the fair since she was five and showing animals from the time she was nine. She’s now 21.
“Without agriculture, we wouldn’t have some of the fruits and vegetables that we have, we wouldn’t have some of the meat that we need,” said Young. “The family-owned shops in West Virginia are supported by the animals we show here, the vegetables that we have up at the exhibit hall.”
The livestock shows run from Sunday, July 14th through Wednesday, July 17th. The auction will take place at 5 PM, Friday, July, 19th, 2019.
As for live entertainment, Mikele Buck will perform on Saturday, July 13th, while Joe Diffie will perform on Saturday, July 20th.