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St. Croix County Fair kicks off ‘family fun’ week

All seven of Fair Board President Gail Maier’s grandchildren were on hand at Fair Clean-Up Day to help prepare for the 2013 St. Croix County Fair. Pictured at the Emergency Services building are from left: Jocelyn Peterson, New Richmond; Mazin and Tarek Khorsed, Roberts; Ashley Kiesler, River Falls; Lylah Khorshed, Roberts; Briana and Dani Kiesler, River Falls.1 / 12
The photography project displays are a popular exhibit at the St. Croix County Fair.2 / 12
Olivia Dumond from Baldwin talks about her 4-H Theater Arts and Musical project with a judge during Thursday's session of the St. Croix County Fair.3 / 12
Connor Cook from Spring valley brushes his llama Amos in preparation for showing during Thursday's session of the St. Croix County Fair. (Photo by Jeff Holmquist)4 / 12
Ice cream was almost a necessity on Thursday at the St. Croix County Fair as temperatures approached 100 degrees.5 / 12
Balloon sculptures were a fun diversion for youngsters and the young at heart on Thursday afternoon. Ozseeker the Clown helped create the unique items for patrons.6 / 12
Exhibitors wait for their cows to be weighed on Thursday at the St. Croix County Fair.7 / 12
Maddox Mahoney of Woodville helps clean the bedding for the cows during Thursday's action at the St. Croix County Fair. The cows were housed in the recently completed Dairy Barn #2.8 / 12
Kyle Matthews from Baldwin gets a calf ready for show on Thursday at the St. Croix County Fairgrounds in Glenwood City.9 / 12
Riley Hammer with the ROlling Hills 4-H Club plays her flute during the Theater Arts and Musical portion of the St. Croix County Fair on Thursday.10 / 12
Nicolas Lentz with Rolling Hills 4-H Club performs a dance during the Theater Arts and Musical presentations on Thursday at the St. Croix County Fair.11 / 12
Judge Fay Stephenson (right) looks over a loaf of bread entered in the open category of the St. Croix County Fair. In the background is volunteer Sharon Johnson.12 / 12

With its wide variety of activities, food and performances, the 2013 St. Croix County Fair is set to embody its theme of family fun July 17-21.

Glenwood City Mayor John Larson kicked off the opening ceremony Wednesday at the fairgrounds with a welcome message, followed by the raising of the American flag by Glenwood City Boy Scouts. After 4-H ambassadors raised their organization’s flag, the St. Croix County Show Choir finished off the ceremony by singing the National Anthem.

Having been a part of St. Croix County for more than a century, the fair has been called a summer tradition that is “relevant and thriving” by Fair Board President Gail Maier, who expects around 20,000-25,000 people to attend the five-day event.

Fairgoers can expect to see many fan favorites return, including the donkey races, Ozseeker the Clown, the carnival, the talent show and the Battle of the Bands, which will be Friday night’s finale. Also returning is the much-anticipated ventriloquist James Wedgewood. A longtime hit at the fair, Wedgewood will put on two shows at 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturday afternoon.

To end Saturday’s festivities, The Memories will perform at 8:15 p.m. at the Croix Court entertainment stage. Comprising Warren Petryk and Tim Stevens of Boyceville, the band has been performing at the fair for 26 years.

In addition to the numerous returning acts and events, the fair will intrigue attendees with a new dairy barn and garden tractor pull, as well as with the Home Free Acapella Singers, a never-before-seen vocal group at the fairgrounds. The five-man singing group will take the stage at 8 p.m. on Thursday night, equipped with nothing but their voices.

With mud volleyball, a magic show or a raffle drawing, Maier said the fair has something for everyone.

“It cultivates curiosity, learning, creativity and leadership skills in our youth who participate,” Maier said. “For the adults of St. Croix County, the fair provides a place to foster cultural and fine arts, serves as a place to display and share our heritage, and connect with others.”

Jeff Holmquist
Jeff Holmquist has been managing editor of the New Richmond News since 2004. He holds a bachelor's degree in journalism and business administration from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. He has previously worked as editor in Wadena, Minn.; Detroit Lakes, Minn.; Hutchinson, Minn.; and Bloomington, Minn. He also was previously owner of the Osceola Sun, Stillwater Courier and Scandia Messenger along with his wife. Together they previously founded and published The Old Times newspaper for antiques and collectibles collectors; and Up!, a Christian magazine of hope and encouragement.
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