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Jefferson County Fair starts this week

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People gather at the Fairbury fairgrounds to enjoy food, games and entertainment in celebration of the 2019 Jefferson County Fair.Carnival rides are returning this year after an absence in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Jefferson County Fair is set to begin this week with a full schedule of events planned for 2021.

This year’s fair will be held July 14-18. Fair Board member Dennis Kenning said he’s excited to have a full schedule of events in 2021, after last year’s event was limited and didn’t feature a carnival due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’re glad that we’re not battling or making our schedule around COVID,” he said. “Last year we were able to have as much as we could under the restrictions. Now we’re trying to get back into it.”

Kenning said the fair offers something for everyone, hosting events at three different locations at the fair grounds in the evenings.

“We pride ourselves on the fact that we have something for everyone at our fair,” he said. “We take a different approach with our entertainment so you can find acts in the grandstand, horse arena and a third or fourth event at the same time. We do that to serve as many people as possible.”

A public 4-H fashion show and talent show were held Monday at 7:30 a.m. as part of pre-fair activities. A cat show will be held Tuesday at 6 p.m., with the dog show scheduled for a day later on Wednesday at 4 p.m.

Mutton busting will be held Wednesday at 6:30 p.m., followed by the Rough Stock Rodeo at 7 p.m. at the horse arena. The events will both also be held Thursday at the same times.

Events kickoff Thursday with check in for many animal and craft displays at the fairgrounds.

A beer garden will be held from 3-8 p.m., and the USAC racers test and tune will be from 5-7 p.m.

The Miss Jefferson County pageant will also be held at 7 p.m. Thursday at the 4-H building.

Friday events kick off at 7 a.m. with a junior fair exhibitor breakfast at the 4-H building.

A prime rib sandwich supper will be held that evening from 5-7 p.m., followed by the USAC midget races at 7 p.m. at the grandstand.

“It’s a national show two nights in a row and you get to see drivers you see on the national circuit,” Kenning said. “Our local people do such a great job putting that on that last year the Friday night show was voted the fifth best in the nation according to the network that covers that. They do a fabulous job. If you want to see some big name drivers, it’s certainly worth attending.”

An antiques roadshow event will be held at 7 p.m. in the 4-H building and team roping will be held at 7 p.m. at the horse arena.

Saturday highlights include a Little Tuggers tractor pull at 4 p.m. an open horse show will be held at the arena at 7 p.m., in addition to the second night of racing at the grandstand.

Events wrap up Sunday, July 18 with a tractor show from 9 a.m to 4 p.m. There will be blacksmith demonstrations all day and a livestock auction at 1 p.m. mud tug-of-war will be held at 3 p.m., followed by egg Russian roulette at 4 p.m. Events finish with the open horse show Sunday at 4 p.m., and exhibits are released at 8 p.m.

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