Board gears up for Routt County Fair


— The Fair board and not a new county fair manager is going to run this season's Routt County Fair.
"We're not going to hire a new county fair manager," County Commissioner Nancy Stahoviak said. "There was not a position in place prior to Ray."
Former Hayden Mayor Ray Mazzola was the county fair manager last year, and resigned during the fall of 1999. Many fairgrounds have a full-time manager and a full-time maintenance person, Mazzola said. Routt County, at least for this season, is attempting to eliminate the former position, and hire someone for the latter.
For now, the Fair Board is going to take back management of the fair at fair time, and will hire a fair maintenance worker a job that would be seasonal, and would not mean the person would be empty-handed most of the year, and swamped during July and August.
The Colorado State University Extension office has received a couple of applications for the position, and should hire someone in early July.
The Fair Board is planning on continuing to evaluate both the maintenance position and managing of the fair by the board, Stahoviak said.
The board has just under a dozen members, and their summer 2000 fair plans are already well under way.
"It's really going to be a great time," Fair Board secretary Linda Long said.
The fair starts on Aug. 19 with the Open Horse Show, and continues through Aug. 27.
Plan to have the evening of Aug. 24 free, folks at the Colorado State University Extension office said, as Steamboat Motors proudly presents Baxter Black, "cowboy poet extraordinaire," that night.
"We're real excited about the County Fair," Steamboat Motors' John Centner said. "We felt by joining forces with the Fair Board and the Extension Office, we could bring Baxter Black in as the leading entertainment. This is enabling us to bring a level of entertainment to the valley that the fair hasn't seen a in a long time. That's not to diminish previous fairs' entertainment, but bringing in someone of Black's caliber, that's pretty big time."
Black, a poet, ex-veterinarian and team roper, has been writing cowboy literature since 1982. He's written 12 books, recorded over a dozen audio-video tapes, and has gained fame as a syndicated columnist and radio commentator from the Tonight Show, PBS and National Public Radio, among others.
According to Black, in spite of all the computerized, digitized, high-tech innovations now available to mankind, there will always be a need for someone who can "think up stuff."
He will be sharing some of his "stuff" with Routt County residents during the fair.
Other events at the fair will include professional rodeos on Aug. 26 and 27, a ranch rodeo, roping, a barbecue, the Junior Livestock Sale and the showing of horses, swine, beef, sheep, dogs, poultry, rabbits and goats by the participants of the Routt County 4-H program.
"It'll be a lot of fun. There'll be so many great things going on," CSU Extension Office's Jean Morrow said.
KBCR will be the official radio station of the upcoming county fair.
"They'll start advertising soon, and it's a good way for people to keep their ears out for any events, arts, crafts, or anything else that might interest them," Morrow said.
Routt County residents should also watch local papers for advertisements.
The annual fair book, offering registration information, dates and times of events, will be available in mid-July. Libraries, post offices and town halls in Steamboat, Hayden and Oak Creek will have copies of the Fair Book, or stop by the Routt County Extension Office to pick one up. If you have any questions regarding the Fair and Rodeo, please call the Extension Office at 879-0825.

To reach Bonnie Nadzam call 871-4205 or e-mail


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