Improvements and new additions seen at Harrison County Fair

A gazebo restored by Belmont-Harrison Career Center students is featured at the Harrison County Fair. T-L Photo/J.D Long

CADIZ — The Harrison County Fair is underway with plenty to see throughout the week.

Each year officials have put forth efforts to show improvements, but this year seems to be a little special.

Fair Vice President Rich Eberhart spoke about the improvements on a hot Tuesday afternoon with the refurbished gazebo sitting just outside the office window. A plaque placed in front of the entrance dedicates the gazebo in memory of Jean Bladman, the 1990 Dairy Princess, “given by friends and neighbors.”

“This was the year of a lot of projects,” Eberhart said.

Another addition to the grounds is a brand new cabin dedicated to the late Tom Carter, who was water and sewer superintendent in Cadiz for many years. It is now called the “Carter Cabin.”

Carter was the treasurer for the fair board, and the cabin is now used by the local fire departments serving the fair, as well as by EMS and the Harrison County Sheriff’s Office.

The cabin was officially dedicated Monday, and when the fair is not in session the Harrison County 4-H Club will use it as a meeting room.

Eberhart said other improvements include a new roof on one of the barns and a rock garden and new fence. Officials are also in the process of raising funds for a new horse complex with site preparations ongoing. This will include a barn, restrooms and a riding facility.

“The biggest goal is to help the youth of the county. Everyone on the board has faith in these kids and we want to give them the best experience we can,” Eberhart said.

He said that along with the grants that have paid for many of these projects, numerous donors have stepped up to help in the efforts and he has seen an influx of more donors this year.

“We couldn’t do it without them,” Eberhart added.

As far as events go, there have been the traditional livestock shows and royalty event, but this year is particularly loaded with vehicles and heavy equipment such as the demolition derby on Friday and motocross, which was held Monday but cut back from two days to one. Eberhart said, through a survey, the board noticed the people requested more truck and tractor pulls and the fair now will have three days of those. He said they can’t fit all the classifications into just one or two days.

Another treat is Jesse Moore’s organ grinder with his friend, 11-year-old Tiko. Moore said he’s now touring with the only monkey and organ grinder show in the United States. Tiko is a black and white Capuchin that is found around Costa Rica or Honduras, according to Moore.

Moore, who is from northern Ohio, has been touring with Tiko for six years and travels all around the country and to the big fairs as well.

“It’s a lot of fun and a completely different atmosphere,” Moore said of his occupation, where he also works with dogs and bears.

He and his wife run a zoo in Florida and participate in educational programs as well. Moore has been working with and training animals for 15 years but he prefers the primates.

“I’ve always loved the primates,” he said. “There’s something very special about them.”

Moore said he got Tiko from a woman who had him as a pet but didn’t know what she’d gotten herself into. Now he and Tiko travel around the country and will be at the fair all week.

“I’m very lucky,” he said. “I’m keeping the lost art of organ grinding alive.”


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