If the lines to ride the Ferris Wheel or buy a pork-a-lean at the Wood County Fair seemed longer on Saturday, it was for good reason. The fair set the single day attendance record with 10,002 people purchasing single day admission.
|Fans give a standing welcome to the Beach Boys August 3, 2013 as beach balls are seen in the air during a concert at the Wood County Fair in Bowling Green, Ohio. The fair set the single day attendance record with 10,002 people purchasing single day admission. (Photo: Enoch Wu/Sentinel-Tribune)
Two of the main reasons for the record was the excellent weather and the sold-out Beach Boys concert. It was the first sold out concert in many years.
With the weekly pass and membership holders and all the workers, there were many more than the 10,000 people on the grounds. The previous record was 9,720.
"It was a very good day," said fair board president Bill Kale.
Fair officials had reported attendance had been up all week, so Saturday's gate record put the punctuation mark on it. Sunday's attendance was also very good, although figures were not available this morning.
"It's all smiles. The rides, the concessions, everybody is happy. The weather has been great." said fair manager Dick King.
King also noted with the changes made in the South parking lot, the post concert traffic flow "worked very well."
Chainsaw carver Dennis Beach was pleased with the sale of his carvings. This was the first year he created a bar at the fair and it fetched the biggest price of more than $1,000. Although his benches did not break the $1,000 mark as they have in past years, overall, he said "it was a great year and a great sale."
Beach is under contract with the fair board and proceeds from the auction are returned to the fair. Hesaid many of his smaller pieces sold for $500 or more.
There is no gate admission today with the main events being the annual livestock sale and the closing demolition derby tonight.
In addition, Durant Amusements which operates the rides and other concessions, will have the second "Kid's Day Ride Special" from noon to 6 when wristbands can be purchased for $10 for unlimited rides.
"We've had a very good week. Saturday was a super day. Anybody that came to the fair on Saturday got more than their money's worth," said Bill Prowant, president of Durant Amusements.
Despite some showers, notably an outburst on Friday, the general consensus around the fairgrounds is that the weather has been perfect.
All three of the concessionaires questioned each said they were very pleased with their sales this week.
One veteran camper noted she had to have her heater on in their camper for the first time ever at the fair; while another fair veteran said she never remembered having to wear a sweatshirt before.