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Our View: It's fair time!

There was a time in the not-so-long-ago when the county fair seemed a thing of the past. As people rushed to the city in search of jobs, fame and fortune, the county fair was one of those things that seemed on its deathbed -- an event steeped in our past agricultural society, and something to which many didn’t pay much attention.

But don’t tell that to those who have worked hard to keep the tradition alive and have brought about a resurgence in getting back to the land, those who have successfully educated society about the importance of our roots.

I grew up in Glenwood City and the fair was very much a highlight of nearly every summer when I was a kid.

Watching older siblings and their friends ride their bikes to the fairgrounds and get hired to help put up tents and carnival rides was something to which I aspired when I was knee-high to a grasshopper.

Though I was never a 4-Her, many of my friends were, so I spent many hours of my childhood chumming around the cattle barns -- a city slicker who helped clean pens every now and again in between gathering together a couple of bucks to enjoy the carnival rides and the fair food.

After leaving the area for three-plus decades, helping to raise three beautiful daughters who also enjoyed summer days at the fairs in faraway counties, I’ve gotten the itch to get back to the St. Croix County Fair.

I suspect that many of you also have similar feelings about the fair and are also looking forward to next week’s happenings.

Much has changed since I was a kid. The entries have increased in numbers and qualities, horses are very much a part of the fair these days and new buildings sprinkle the fairgrounds. Though there was entertainment in the old days, nothing matches the quantity and quality of the acts that grace the stage nowadays.

And the best thing?

It’s all free!

Well, you might have to plunk down a few bucks to park your car all day, but that’s surely not something that’s going to break the bank.

That said, we’re looking forward to attending this year’s fair and we hope you are, too. Whether you’re from Glenwood City, New Richmond, Hudson, Woodville or Baldwin doesn’t matter.

It’s the county fair, so our hope is that folks from across the county will take the time to spend a few hours (and bucks) enjoying the festivities.

Raymond T. Rivard, editor