Fair attendance falls | TheUnion.com

Fair attendance falls

Heat likely kept several thousand people away from this year’s Nevada County Fair.

Attendance at fair the was down 6,167 people, about 6 percent, from last year, the fair’s chief executive officer, Ed Scofield, said Monday.

Last year, 110,000 people, exhibitors, concessionaires and others came to the five-day fair in August, Scofield said.

This year, about 103,500 people came.

“The last time we had a dramatic drop such as this one was in 1996, and that also was in relation to a heat wave,” Scofield said. “That was even more dramatic, because the power went down in seven states. It hit us on a Saturday night. That was the worst one.”

Figures are preliminary; a final report will be released later, he said.

The junior livestock auction raised $415,000, down $29,000 from last year.

The fair paid out about $39,000 in premiums – cash awards ranging from 50 cents to $1,000 for first-, second- and third-place prizes in thousands of categories.

“People don’t do it for the money,” Scofield noted.

Businesses bought 3,535 “business special” passes – books of 10 tickets for $2.50 each, half the regular $5 admission.

The highest number of people came to the fair Saturday – 19,988 this year. Last year, 21,571 people came on Saturday.

Wednesday’s attendance was lowest: 13,073 this year, up from 12,052 last year. Wednesday was Seniors’ Day, when people over 62 paid $2 for admission instead of the usual $5.

Kids’ Day – Thursday, when children 12 and under entered the fair free – brought in 14,885 this year, down from 15,735 last year.

Scholar Students’ Day – Friday – saw 16,407 people taking advantage of free admission for honor roll students and for people with disabilities, down from last year’s 20,196 attendance.

Attendance dropped Sunday to 13,417, compared to 14,446 last year.

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