Nonprofits’ fair share: Treat Street raises $900K during Nevada County Fair |

Nonprofits’ fair share: Treat Street raises $900K during Nevada County Fair

People fly upside-down at the Nevada County Fair in this archive photo.
Laura Mahaffy/ | The Union

This year’s Nevada County Fair raised more than $1.2 million, which leaves only a small amount of revenue once the fairgrounds pays its expenses from the annual event, officials said.

Rea Callender, CEO of the fairgrounds, had no specific amount the annual fair garnered after expenses. However, he noted that the fairgrounds’ maintenance requires much of the revenue. Any profit is put back into the property.

“This really is about and for the community,” Callender said.

The fair, held in August, drew about 100,000 attendees — an increase of about 5,000 over last year, Callender said.

“People love these fairgrounds,” he added.

The nonprofits that occupy Treat Street, where fair-goers buy food and drinks, garnered $900,000. The fairgrounds gets about 15 percent of that, around $135,000.

This year’s fair is the first time nonprofits have paid 15 percent. It was set at 12 percent from 1960 to 2015, Callender said.

According to Callender, it’s normal for fairs to charge 25 percent.

“There are 78 fairs in California,” he added. “Of the 78 fairs, we charge probably the least.

“It’s really important that people understand that we get as much money to the nonprofits as we can,” Callender said.

Kathy Devlin, guardian of the local Job’s Daughters, said she understands that the fairgrounds has expenses it must recoup. Her group can shoulder the additional cost.

“For our group, we’re strong,” she said. “We’re able to hold our own year after year.”

Devlin estimates that her group sold 18,000 corn dogs at this year’s fair. The money raised goes toward its own and the international organization, a local scholarship and service projects.

“It was good for us,” Devlin said. “Our numbers were up a bit over previous years.”

The same is true for the Junior Livestock Auction.

More than 236 animals were sold at the Junior Livestock Auction. The auction raised over $490,000 — about $30,000 more than last year.

Callender said buyers provided 693 “bumps” at the auction. A “bump” is additional money added to the cost of an animal that is a benefit to the student.

The fair featured more than 7,400 exhibits from the community, almost half of which came from youth exhibitors.

To contact Staff Writer Alan Riquelmy, email or call 530-477-4239.

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