Fair ready for weekend full of motorized fun

T-L Photo/ROBERT A. DEFRANK Carlie, left, and Sydney McFarland color a mural by the barns during the Belmont County Fair.

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — The Belmont County Fair continued Friday with officials preparing for evening and weekend events, including tractor pulls, a motocross and a demolition derby.

Fair Board President Debbie Ault said expectations were high for the Ohio State Tractor Pullers Association Tractor and Truck Pull slated for Friday evening. Today will feature MX 214 motocross racing in the morning with registration at 7 a.m., then the Central Ohio Tractor Pullers at 7 p.m.

“This evening will have the big OSTPA tractor pull, and that’s always a huge event. A lot of people love that event. … And Sunday evening we finish out the fair with a demolition derby,” Ault said of the event that begins at 1 p.m. “Those are always very big crowd drawers, crowd pleasers. The motocross track is actually rated as one of the top tracks in this part of the country, so we have a lot of participation for that.”

Ault added that children expected to continue to attend the fair after Thursday’s Fair Field Day, when first- through third-graders from across the county enjoyed a trip to the fairgrounds.

“And then of course the kids tell their parents they want to go back to the fair,” Ault said.

“We’ve got a lot going on for the kids all throughout the fair,” she said, pointing out a mural that children were free to color as one example. “We have a big coloring mural that has been very, very popular down in the barn area. This year we added a memorial playground for the children down in the barn area. That was in memory of Dorothy and Denver Kaiser. They were very big fair supporters, and their family put the playground in for the children in memory of them.”

Ault added that the young participants in the fair always rise above and beyond expectations.

“I truly believe we have the most outstanding youth in the state of Ohio in our 4-H and FFA programs. The work and dedication they put into their projects is unsurpassed anywhere in the state, and that’s why we work hard to put this fair together to showcase these youth,” she said.

The fair also features performances from the Zerbini Family Circus and the magic show Grand Illusions by the Blooms.

Another interesting Sunday event is a 10 a.m. horse show, open to all.

“This year we’ve actually added an open-class horse show on Sunday, so we’re very excited for participation in that. We haven’t had an open-class horse show at the Belmont County Fair for several years, so we’re very excited bring that back,” Ault said. “Anyone can bring their horse in to participate. You don’t have to be a member of 4-H with your 4-H horse here. It’s open to the public to bring their animals in and participate in the horse show.”