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Manistee County Fair | August 2019

Annual horse show to open 2019 Manistee County Fair By Ken Grabowski Associate Editor Everyone agrees that the Manistee County Fair Horse Show carries special meaning for being the opening event of the fair each year. When the word spreads that the horse show is taking place it emits an “it’s fair time” atmosphere among everyone associated with preparing the fairgrounds for another memorable event. The arena at the fairground will be bustling with activity starting at 10 a.m. on Aug. 11 at the fairground’s horse arena. This annual event has not only signified the start of the fair, it has given countless children the opportunity to compete and show off their horse skills. Elaine Bossingham who is coordinating the event, said the show has some

changes this year and they are looking for plenty of competitors to join in the fun. “We have changed our class list a little this year to include a new class for our little people that will be the stick horse class,” said Bossingham. “That is where they bring in stick horses and ride them and get judged on it.” Bossingham said for those who are unaware, a stick horse is the old toy version with a horse head on a stick. The concept is to encourage an interest in horses for the young children, so they will hopefully return someday with a real horse to take part in the horse show. Another fun class will be the freedom one where the horse gets to show off some of its talents in the ring without the assistance of the rider.

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Children of all ages take part in the Manistee County Fair Horse Show. This year it will be taking place beginning at 10 a.m. on Aug. 11. (News Advocate file photo)

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“In the freedom class you get to choose music for your horse and then turn them loose out in the arena so they can be free to run around and show how they move when they aren’t handled by an owner,” said Bossingham. There also will be many of the traditional classes that people have become accustomed to see at the Manistee County Fair Horse Show. “We are going to have some of our usual halter classes both in English and Western classes,” said Bossingham. Those competing in the show this year will also be getting guidance and judging from a new judge. “There is going to be a new judge this year in Shayna Marsh,who is a former 4-H member from Grand Traverse so she has a lot of insight to people who show,” said Bossingham. “She is a super gal and we are really glad to have her at our show.” Bossingham said there will be a cookout for all of the exhibitors and people who come to watch. She said that is always done thanks to the fair board. Another planned change that should go over well with all of of those who compete is what the top ones in each class will be receiving. “We are going to have a lot of really nice usable prizes this year instead of the conventional ribbons,” said Bossingham. “It was decided that it was a lot nicer to receive a halter that you can use with your horse.” Despite all the rain that came into the area recently the grounds around the arena are in good shape for the upcoming show. “The fair board has been down working on the grounds as Mother Nature helped us out with some good weather

The competitors in the fair horse show put their horses through their paces under the watchful eye of the judge. (News Advocate file photo)

after the rain to dry things out,” said Bossingham. “So we are looking forward to a good day on that Sunday to open up the fair.” Bossingham said they have lined up a great staff to work with the show this year as always. She said if the weather cooperates it should be a great day for everyone involved in it. “We will keep doing this show for as long as we can and our goal with the show is to keep it about a rider and their horse,” said Bossingham. “It should be a good time.”

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Manistee County Fair | August 2019

Fair brings in new carnival, events By Ashlyn Korienek

Staff Writer

Those who run the Manistee County Fair are working to bring the large-scale event back to its former glory. At one point in its history, Janelle Ware, Manistee County Agricultural Society treasurer, said the fairgrounds were once packed with people who participated in 4-H, the carnival and other fair activities. Now, some changes are being made for this year’s fair to make it the best event yet. The Manistee County Fair originated in 1886 under the Manistee County Agricultural Society, which is recognized as a nonprofit. The Manistee County Fairgrounds — located at 7587 First St. in Onekama

— is owned by Manistee County and managed by the board of directors of the Manistee County Agricultural Society. “We are trying to bring new things into the fair, as well as the board would like to see the fair what it was like when we were younger,” Ware said. “Fairs are struggling — and it is not just Manistee County — with kids participation and stuff like that, and we would just love to see it like when we were kids. Barns were packed, merchant buildings were packed, the midway was packed, and the grandstand was packed with people.” This year’s fair motto, “Come catch the fair bug,” tells a story of how much fun the local fair can provide for families.

Carnival set up takes place at the 2018 Manistee County Fair. (News Advocate File Photo)

Ware said this year they are bringing in new vendors and music, starting with a new

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“They are going to be bringing different rides in, I do not know exactly what those rides are yet but there will be 12 to 14 rides,” Ware said.

band. They will be playing from 5:30-7 p.m. in front of the grandstand in the infield.” While the board of directors constantly tries to improve the fair, Ware said they have done many projects to prepare for this year’s event.

The new carnival vendor was a result of the community’s response, when people were asked what types of changes they would like to see at future events. “We needed to make a change, and we took some suggestions and different comments throughout the community,” Ware said. “One of the big comments was the carnival company. So we took those steps forward and got a new carnival company.” A staple of each fair is the diverse food vendors, which Ware said will be different this year. “The carnival company is going to be bringing in some of their own food wagons, but

“We have done a lot of capital improvement at the fair grounds. We have done some bathroom remodeling and we are doing some renovating on our infield to have, hopefully before fair, free parking,” she said. “We are constantly working to make things better.”

Two kids enjoy a carnival ride at the 2018 Manistee County Fair. (News Advocate File Photo)

then we also had some people contact us. We will have some outside food vendors in,” she said. Ware said WTCM will also be hosting a live radio show to

break down the “Triple Crown Series” demolition derby. A Ludington band, The Whiskey Rebels, will play before the derby starts. “On Saturday evening, we are

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calling this the triple crown series... WTCM is going to be live from about 5-7 p.m.,” Ware said. “We have free concert entertainment this year on Saturday evening, which is huge for us, and it’s a local

Ware expects the final day of the Manistee County Fair to bring in a large number of attendees. “Saturday is going to be huge for us. The demolition derby always draws huge crowds,” she said. “There are tons of different things that we are doing.”

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Manistee County Fair | August 2019

4-H brings fur, feathers and fun to Manistee County Fair BY KYLE KOTECKI Staff Writer The 4-H club has been a staple of the Manistee County Fair for years. 2019 will be no different, and all involved are anxiously awaiting the week when all their hard work pays off. “4-H members, their club leaders and families have been working hard on final preparations to their annual projects,” said Deb Laws, 4-H program coordinator for Benzie and Manistee counties. “They’ve attended meetings, clinics and practices. They’ve experienced highs and lows as projects have thrived and sometimes not. They’ve dealt with good news, bad news and no news, and now they’re ready for this really big show that happens once a year.” With animal judging, a youth live performance event, exhibit judging, and the auction, 4-H offers fairgoers many avenues of entertainment. The day with the most hustle and bustle, however, is entry day. “The day does not offer any public spectator events, but its feverish activity level is still a sight to behold,” Laws said. “Dozens and dozens of open and 4-H class exhibits will be carried in by hand, wagon, trailer, truck and car. During all this frenzy, there are last minute repairs and adjustments being made to fair locations and attractions.” A herculean effort goes into putting on all the

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Auction day allows fairgoers an opportunity to fill their freezers with livestock that has been well cared for. (News Advocate file photo)

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“We’re always looking for help around this time,” he said. “I think we have a few members going off so we’ll have some turnover, but I think we should be able to find people.” Whether it is a monkeypox virus alert, an avian flu outbreak or missing judges, every year seems to offer a unique challenge that threatens to derail 4-H events at the fair. Laws said 2019 will be known as “the year of never-ending mud.” “As a result of the torrential rainstorm and subsequent flooding in Manistee County on July 20, the animal barn floors were covered with inches of mud,” Laws said. “I have never seen anything like it, ever. As we speak (on July 26), there is a good handful of 4-H volunteers working hard to clean it up in

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Show day allows 4-H members a chance to shine as they show the animals with which they have been closely working for months. (News Advocate file photo)

time for fair week. “While some of us are just worried about the damage to our own basements, property and so on, these folks are giving volunteer time to clean up areas so that fair exhibitors and guests will benefit from their labor.” Weather woes and low animal counts all over the state caused a concern the livestock auction might be a little lacking this year. According to Laws, that will not be the case. “I just looked over the registrations and if everything makes weight and passes judging, we will be selling 126 animals,” she said. “Our historical high was 166 in 2011 and our typical average is 130 to 140, so we’re not too far off from our average. “The noticeable difference will be in the type of animals,” Laws continued. “Large animal counts are down but some small animal numbers are up.” The auction allows the children to earn a profit from all the hard work they put into raising their ani-

Animals large and small will be the center of attention at the various 4-H events at the Manistee County Fair this year. (News Advocate file photo)

mals. Pigs, cattle, goats, sheep, rabbits and poultry will be on display and available to the highest bidder. Putney said the large animals draw the most bidders to the auction, but he anticipates plenty of buyers for all species. “It really depends on the person,” he said. “We seem to get a pretty good showing for most of the

large animals.” Laws said 4-H required selling members to double the number of buyers they invite to the auction. “We hope buyer attendance will reflect the fruits of their labor,” she said. Find a full schedule of 4-H events at manisteecountyfair.org/events.

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Manistee County Fair | August 2019

Organizers anticipate an exciting 2019 Manistee County Fair By Robert Myers Staff Writer The Manistee County Fair is on a mission to return to its former glory, and then some, as it returns to the county fairgrounds in Onekama on Aug 11. While designated the Manistee County Fair, the exciting annual event also brings in families and participants from surrounding counties, such as Benzie and Mason. Participation in the fair may not be what it once was, but this year, organizers are working hard to help the fair reclaim its fame as a can’t miss destination. “I love helping the communi-

ty and would love to bring the fair to what it was when I was a kid,” said Janelle Ware, who has served the past three years on the fair board. “When I was a kid, there were barns full of animals, and a great carnival with fantastic midway events. ... We are trying to bring back old things but in a new way.” Part of what organizers have tried to do to rejuvenate the fair is giving it an earlier start in the summer. In years past, it has been held toward the end of August, but according to fair board member Elaine Bossingham that time simply no longer works for many of the local youth who want to take part in the fair but simply

Kids Day is always popular at the Manistee County Fair; this year that day is Aug. 14. The carnival will be provided by Family Fun Time Amusements Carnival. (News Advocate File Photo)

cannot spare the time when late August rolls around. “Most of our 4-H participants are going back to school at the end of August, so we moved it early so that they can still

participate and not miss out on school sports or going back to college. The date was a conflict, so a lot of kids were not participating,” Bossingham said. “Another reason was because we wanted to chime in

with Onekama Days and all of the visitors that are still here from out of town, so that they can attend the fair.” Thanks to the change in

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Manistee County Fair | August 2019

MotorCross is one of many grandstand events slated for this year’s Manistee County Fair.

Fair to offer variety of grandstand events for all ages BY Dylan Savela Staff Writer The Manistee County Fair will offer wall-to-wall activities for people of all ages — residents and visitors alike — but perhaps the highlights of highlights can be found on the grandstand each evening from Aug. 13 to Aug. 17.

The tried and true Heritage Draft Horse Pulling will kick off the grandstand lineup on Tuesday, Aug. 13. Gates will open at 6 p.m., with the event scheduled to run from 7-11 p.m. Grandstand admission is $3, with the exception of veterans and active members of the military, who will receive free entry.

This year’s installment of the fair will roll out a variety of events for the whole family throughout the week, from horse pulling to demolition derbies and more.

“They’ll have anywhere between 8 to 12 pair of horses, and sometimes there will be a few from out of state,” said Ben Reed of the Heritage Draft Horse Pull. “And there’s all kind of pullers:

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Manistee County Fair | August 2019 event will be $10 for ages 13 and up; $5 for ages 6-12; and free for ages 5 and under.

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TNT is also slated to close the fair schedule on Saturday night, Aug. 17, with gates opening at 4:30 p.m. Admission will be $15 for ages 13 and up; $8.50 for ages 6-12; and free for ages 5 and under.

“We’ve grown quite a bit,” Sorenson said. “We’re all about safety and all about friendship. We’re professional, but TNT’s all about having fun at the end of the night.”

The same divisions will be presented Saturday night too, with the addition of “King of the Track” crowning and a “Night of Smashing” demolition derby. The derby will be preceded by a concert by “The Whiskey Rebels.” “Those Saturday night shows, we’ve had over 100 cars for the past two years,” said Todd Sorenson of TNT Demolition. “TNT’s really excited about the Manistee County Fair. We always are. We’re going to bring top-of-the-line demolition derby bump and run.” TNT has 36 shows in total slated for this year, a sched-

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On Thursday, Aug. 15, SJO Productions will present MotorCross in the grandstand at 7 p.m., with gates opening at 6. Admission will be $12 for ages 13 and up; $5 for ages 6-12; and free for ages 5 and under. On Friday, Aug. 16, the West Michigan Pullers truck and tractor pulling club will be on display with an event that starts at 7 p.m., with gates opening at 6 p.m. Admission will be $15 for ages 13 and up; $8 for ages 6-12; and free for ages 5 and under. For more information on the grandstand events or the Manistee County Fair in general, visit manisteecountyfair.org.

TNT Demolition Derby is a fan favorite at the Manistee County Fair. (News Advocate file photo)

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Manistee County Fair | August 2019

Year of hard work for livestock projects culminates with auction By Scott Fraley Staff Writer The county fair can be a bittersweet experience for some young members of the 4-H. It is a culmination of a year of training, feeding and caring for an animal. This is the time when they must say goodbye and bring their animals to market. It is the final hurdle in their livestock project where the fruits of their hard labor are finally paid off.

A 4-H’er prepares to take her turkeys into the event arena for the Large and Small Animal Auction in 2018. Prior to the auction, 4-H’ers must meet with prospective buyers as businesses. (News Advocate File Photo)

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port on Manistee County, the majority of money raised from all 4-H auctions goes back to the 4-H members and is used for back-to-school needs and college funds. The Manistee County Livestock Council is comprised of volunteers which oversee and assist 4-H staff with events and activities that focus on animal science and education. According to Lacki, the 4-H volunteers are responsible for approximately 130 kids in the program.

4-H and youth members who bring their animals to auction receive fair compensation in recognition of the hands-on work they put into their project animals.

Fair-goers have the opportunity to bid on animals including hogs, beef, lambs, goats, veal, rabbits and fowl. Buyers range from individuals and families looking for quality meat, to breeders, butchers and grocery stores. Nearly half of the buyers represent businesses local to this county.

By participating in the 4-H livestock program, youngsters are introduced to the sophisticated, multi-million dollar industries of agriculture and animal husbandry. “It’s all up to the kids,” said Carl Lacki, president of the Livestock Council. “They have to go out and meet with prospective buyers as businesses. Anybody that they feel they would like to talk to and contact that could be a prospective bidder at the fair.”

“We go there to support the kids and we end up buying (livestock) at every fair,” said Brent Radford, whose Swick Custom Butchering is one of the meat processors registered with the Manistee County Fair animal auction. “Most of the animals look really good from the fair. You can ask the kids and they can tell you exactly how they fed them and how they raised them.”

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year’s auction have earned a solid reputation from years of participation and all meet the high standards of the Livestock Council. Buyers also have the assurance that the animal they carefully selected is the one they receive. “When we have a pig from the fair, it normally has an ear tag — we go from that ear tag and as soon as the pig is dead and cleaned that ear tag number gets put right back on the pig with a waterproof tag,” said Radford. There are countless options when it comes to meat preparation, from smoked ham and cured bacon to aged beef and sausage. Animal buyers can approach the processors with any cutting, wrapping and smoking preferences. Radford recommends the porterhouse and ribeye cuts for cattle and pork chops for hog buyers.

Prior to the auction, 4-H’ers take their animal into the ring for judging. Those who win ribbons can get higher prices for their animal in the auction. (News Advocate File Photo)

Price for processing is determined by the hanging weight of the carcass as it hangs from the rail. At this stage the hide and viscera have been removed. The animal is then taken down and cut into sale-able meat.

During the livestock auction at the Manistee County Fair, bidders will have the chance to bid on many different types of animals including steers, hogs, lambs, goats and more. (News Advocate File Photo)

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For more information about the Manistee County Fair and livestock auction visit https://www.manisteecountyfair. org/. To learn more about the local 4-H program visit https://www.canr.msu. edu/manistee/4-h/.

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Manistee County Fair | August 2019 ing us. Pretty much, the owner of the company said that he works for us, which is fantastic. We got to pick the hours, and he got a lot of great ideas to bring new things to the carnival and community,” she said.

Continued from page 8 dates, the fair will now kick off the weekend immediately following Onekama Days, giving the community three straight weeks of excitement before summer starts to wind down. The fair begins on Aug. 11 with the fairgrounds opening for trailers and the fair office opening for entry tags. Although most fair activities will not commence until Tuesday, the community is welcome to enter the fairgrounds for free that day to attend the youth horse show, the fair’s inaugural event, which kicks off at 10 a.m. on Sunday. After animals and exhibits are entered on Monday, the fair will kick into full swing on Tuesday with several exciting events and the start of the carnival at 3 p.m. The Family Fun Time Amusements Carnival will be on site daily from Tuesday through Saturday. According to Ware, the fair board is really excited to work for the company with which they have thus far had a great rapport. “They are excited and they are help-

One of the annual fair highlights each year is Kids Day, which will take place on Aug. 14. All kids 10 and under receive free admission on that day, which correspond’s with the fair’s emergency services day. Local law enforcement agencies have been asked to bring patrol cars and boats, and organizers are also hoping to have a fire truck and other rescue equipment on site for kids to study and stand next to for photos. “This will give the kids a chance to learn all about safety and what emergency response people do,” Bossingham said. Also this year, Farm Bureau will be celebrating its 100th anniversary. It will have a booth in the merchant building and some special events on Aug. 16 and 17. Each night of the fair, Aug. 13 through 17, will feature exciting grand-

Enjoy the Fair!

The youth horse show kicks off the events at the Manistee County Fair at 10 a.m. on Aug. 11. (News Advocate File Photo)

stand events. This is an improvement from recent years when the fair only held grandstand events on four nights. The fair will continue on through Saturday with exciting events each day, and when attendees aren’t enjoying these events, they will be free to enjoy the carnival, visit the merchant building, or tour the animal barns where they can interact with the animals and the dedicated young people who have raised them. “I like watching the kids showing their animals, the laughter and everyone enjoying the fair,” Bossingham said. For Bossingham, the animal events are her favorite of the fair. Her two youngest children have raised animals for the fair, so she has seen firsthand the benefits it has offered them. “I love the beef show. That is my alltime favorite. That is Tuesday at 4 p.m.

Then the 4-H auction is Thursday (at 5:30 p.m.). That’s probably the highlight,” Bossingham said. “That one really needs a lot of community support. The kids learn how to be an entrepreneur. They are learning how to manage a project from the beginning to the end. They learn how to go out and get buyers, how to interact with the public. There are a lot of pluses besides that paycheck.” As for what advice she has for people considering the fair, Bossingham said simply to visit the fair, and visit it often. “Come every day,” she said. “There are lots of different things going on. We’ve got a concert on Saturday for the demolition derby. Definitely come and support the kids during the 4-H exhibits and the judging Tuesday and Wednesday. Just come every day. There is always something new and different going on.”

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Manistee County Fair | August 2019

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Manistee County Fair | August 2019

A School Committed to Excellence

Onekama Consolidated Schools 5016 Main Street- Onekama • (231) 889-5521

SCHOOL BEGINS SEPTEMBER 3, 2019 Registration/Orientation/Open House Wednesday, August 28th st 1 Grade - 12th Grade - 4:30pm - 8pm Kindergarten - 2pm K-12

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Specialized Fine Arts School Of Choice - Leader In County Career Prep Active Parent Groups Challenging Core Curriculum Inter-Generational Volunteer Program In Classroom Daily Website Updates Student Recognition Programs Distance Learning Lab 21St Century Classrooms Technology Curriculum K-12 After School Tutoring USDA Farm To School Lunch Program Physical Education Award Winning Art Program

MS-HS

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On-Site - Off Site Dual Enrollment Championship Athletic Programs Cutting Edge Classroom Technology Award Winning Yearbook State Recognized Projects High School Foreign Language Success Lunch Credit Recovery Industrial Arts All Students Issued MAC Air

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Leaps & Bounds Childcare After School Daycare All Day - Every Day Kindergarten Safety Engineered Playground Academic & Athletic Competitions All Students Issued iPad (1 to 1)

Onekama Consolidated Schools 231-889-5521

STUDENT SERVICES 231-889-5521 SUPERINTENDENT'S OFFICE 231-889-4251 www.ocs.manistee.org

ONE Campus • ONE Family • ONE Choice • ONEKAMA

Profile for Hearst Midwest

2019 Manistee County Fair  

2019 Manistee County Fair  

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