One week of each year is dedicated to the Grant County Fair which is quickly approaching. The fair runs from Aug. 14-18 this year. During that week everyone’s inner cowboy comes out in one way or another.
This year appears to be no different.
The fair offers the opportunity for members of the community to show their support for various organizations doing everything from teaching kids a work ethic and responsibility to raising money for charitable causes. These organizations volunteer time, effort and money to make the fair what it is.
One of the most famous of these organizations, or rather fund-raisers, is the Spaceburger booth strategically located in line with the front entrance to the fairgrounds. For those who are not fans of the mysterious burger-pressed sandwich, remember your money goes to the Moses Lake Lioness Club, which in turn doles out that money to various causes throughout the year.
For much of the public the fair is food and the carnival, but for some it is a culmination of a summer’s worth of work.
The 4-H and FFA exhibitors at the Grant County Fair bring items that range from baking and candy to sewing projects and livestock animals, large and small. All of the exhibits displayed as work by a 4-H or FFA member are projects aimed at teaching youth how to learn responsibility and the value of hard work. These lessons are no more aptly seen than in the livestock shows.
Animals, as small as rabbits the size of a grown man’s palm and as large as 1,500 pounds of headstrong Appaloosa, are exhibited to show the growth of the exhibitor and of the livestock.
With the exception of horses, much of the livestock is sold for market purposes and to give hardworking kids a reward for their efforts to train unruly pigs to stand still with the tap of a cane or to kneel beside a lamb in the show ring for two and a half hours. The livestock sale is the community’s chance to pat youth of the county on the back, to let them know that their work was not in vain. It is a great way to donate money to a cause that gets less and less attention each year and needs more and more support.
A popular cause returns at this year’s Grant County Fair in the rodeo arena.
The Moses Lake Roundup Rodeo is dedicated to raising money to help support the Moses Lake Cancer Foundation and increase breast cancer awareness. The Tough Enough to Wear Pink campaign began in the Pro Rodeo Cowboy Association in 2005 and was adopted by the Moses Lake Roundup Rodeo Association in partnership with the Moses Lake Cancer Foundation to raise money and awareness for the disease.
Much of the week is dedicated to cotton candy and carnival rides but let us not forget that this annual event is also an opportunity to see friends from around the county you have not seen in six months. It is an opportunity to spend time with your family in the hustle and bustle of life. It is an opportunity for each of us to give back to the community.
This editorial originally published Aug. 19, 2010 and is a tribute to Ned Thomas, who annually wrote similar fair-themed editorials from 1950 to 1967.