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By George Horvath
Staff Writer 

Fair Board considers food vendor situation, takes stand against cruelty


June 11, 2020

WORLAND – The Washakie County Fair Board met Monday for its regularly scheduled meeting. They discussed a range of issues as the county fair nears. The fair will take place from Jul. 27-Aug. 1.

Fair Board President Jeff Lapp recently spoke with Washakie County Public Health Nursing Manager Amanda Heinemeyer to discuss the likely COVID-19 mask and social distancing requirements that will apply at the time of the fair. Heinemeyer told Lapp that the situation remains uncertain, but that Governor Mark Gordon’s next briefing on the matter, scheduled for June 15, may help to clarify the picture.

One of several reasons this is important to the Fair is that it has bearing on whether there will be food booths. The ladies of the Benevolent Patriotic Order of DOES operate one of the food booths, and they would prefer not to wear masks while doing so. If it is necessary for food vendors to wear masks, the fair might have fewer food booths. The situation will be clearer after the governor’s next briefing.

The board made edits to the fair book, ironing out changes to dates and times. They will reach out to the rodeo vendor to confirm times. Admission prices for the various fair events will be the same as last year.

The board determined that absolutely no cruelty to animals will be tolerated. Any reports of cruelty to animals will be investigated by a committee composed of at least three fair board members, 4-H advisors or FFA advisors. The committee will use its judgement to determine whether there has been cruelty. Penalties for cruelty will escalate depending on severity and whether cruelty is repeated, and may range from a warning to exclusion from the Fair.

The board will convene a special meeting on Monday, June 29, to assess any changes to the COVID-19 public health requirements and, depending on the requirements, if it will be feasible to go forward with the Fair. Lapp reported that Washakie County Commissioner Aaron Anderson had informally told him to plan for a normal fair, which is what the board had determined to do at its previous meeting. The board reiterated its position that if a normal fair were not possible, the fair would be canceled. The board had no appetite for any sort of “virtual” fair. At present, the board is proceeding to plan for a normal fair.


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