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St. James Plaindealer - St. James, MN
  • Fair weather for the Watonwan County Fair

  • A lot of the locals will say that 'It's always hot for the fair', or that 'It always rains when the Fair's going on'.

    But the 2013 Watonwan County Fair kind of dodged those weather bullets.
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  • A lot of the locals will say that 'It's always hot for the fair', or that 'It always rains when the Fair's going on'.
    But the 2013 Watonwan County Fair kind of dodged those weather bullets.
    The one good rain over the course of the Fair's run happened in the overnight hours, so it didn't put the damper on Fair attendance.
    Wednesday and Thursday were on the warmish to hot side, but it wasn't blazing hot. The temps were not up around 100 degrees F. with a heat index in the 120 degree range.
    No, by the time the main Fair attendance days of Friday , Saturday and Sunday rolled around the weather was delightful!
    Temperatures were seasonal and in the low 80s, the humidity was low and the rain stayed away. The Watonwan County Fair attendees couldn't have asked for anything better.
    Well, maybe not such a strong north wind on some of those County Fair Days would be a request.
    There's a reason the animal buildings are at the north end of the fair grounds. On a typical July day with the wind blowing out of the south, those farmyard fresh smells would be blown away from the rest of the fairgrounds.
    On Friday, with the winds out of the north, all fair visitors had a chance to sense what some of the important activities of the Watonwan County Fair were.
    Bill Brown and his family received the Watonwan County Family Farm of the Year Award on Saturday.
    Colin Hoppe won the Burt Lofgren Memorial Award on Saturday.
    The award is given to a student who best exemplifies the way in which Burt lived, said Vonnie Mathistad.
    "He was a very good farmer, and a perfect guy all the way around," said Vonnie. "He was involved in church council and was president of so many things."
    FFA and 4-H boards observe students throughout the year. Judges then determine whether a student's attitude and willingness to help others will make them a candidate for the award. They then chose Hoppe based on those observations.
    For the most part, fair goers experienced a delightful stretch of weather where people could take in the Midway, hop on some of the rides, mostly lose at the games of chance, eat the fair food, play bingo and watch the various truck, tractor and horse pulls.
    Fair Board President Terry Braaten said things went pretty well at the Watonwan County Fair this year. He thought that people enjoyed the 2013 Watonwan County Fair.
    An early estimate was that Fair attendance was a little less than last year's Fair. As of Sunday afternoon, Braaten was satisfied with the way the 2013 Watonwan County Fair turned out.
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