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Circus at fairgrounds canceled a week before it happens


Last updated 4/17/2019 at 11:56am

During the Great Northern Fair Board monthly meeting Tuesday, Board Chair Tyler Smith announced that the planned King Cole Circus was canceled because the company went bankrupt.

"Those who have already bought tickets should call their bank and file fraud charges," Smith said.

Upon further investigation, the fair board discovered that the circus had run under different names.

"We need to be more careful who we use," Smith said. "I'm not sure how better a review of the circus we could have done before hiring them."

The King Cole Circus could not be reached for comment.

The board was unable to approve the minutes of last month's meeting because they were lost in the mail.

Board member Sean Bickford was concerned about the maintenance of the arena during events.

"The event is responsible for mid-event maintenance," said Bickford.

The fair board is developing a list of people who are authorized to use the tractor for maintenance in the arena.

The board spent several hours at the fairgrounds to do maintenance and other necessary labor.

Board member Ray Kallenberger measured the bleachers to estimate the cost of putting covers on them when not in use. The board is still considering options for what to use.

The fairgrounds is still facing an increase in gas and electric bills. The board said the hard freeze may have caused the costs to rise."

The budget is in good standing and camping will be open soon, which will add another revenue stream for the season.

Board Vice Chair Chelby Gooch said the board needs to sign off on paperwork for the terminated employees because some are still showing as employees.

The board is still working on a plan for the 4-H sidewalk. There are several events planned for the next month including an antique show and several high school and college rodeos.

Two people have shown interest in the manager position.

"I need to meet with them and schedule interviews with them," Smith said.

The board is working on a letter to send to the museum board asking them what they want to do with some artifacts that have been stored at the fairgrounds.

"We are not your dumping ground," Smith said.

The board approved a motion to move forward with using Triangle Communications as their internet and phone provider.

"Wireless internet will be provided to vendors during the fair, the Bigger Better Barn, the Chuckwagon and the campground," Smith said.

The service could be installed within a couple of weeks.

"Having wifi at the campground would be a major selling point," Bickford said.

The board amended the motion to replace the provided phone line with a cellphone line.

The board is currently waiting for two different bids on paper for work to be done adding air conditioning to multiple locations around the fairgrounds.Three different companies are bidding to do the work in the new office.

Bickford said the board needs a better way to identify who owns horses at the fairgrounds.

"We need a way of better identifying information related to the horses," he said. "I've come to the barn and seen the stalls filled and was not able to tell who owned each horse."

"We could use a white board that could list the horse and pertinent medical info of the horses, in case we needed that info if something were to happen to the horse." Gooch said.

"If they don't want to provide us that information, they can store their horses somewhere else," Smith said.

The board is still working on installing new kiosks at the campground, stalls and the barn.

It decided to not allow pyrotechnics inside the Bigger Better Barn, but are still considering allowing pyrotechnics for outdoor events.


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