Fairboard accepts grant funding to continue Fair for All campaign

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GREENVILLE – The Darke County Agricultural Society Board of Directors met Wednesday evening.

During Public Comment, Tim Reck discussed the horse barn renovations. After a question about the funding the Fairboard is giving Reck for this project was resolved, they stated they have spent over $76,000 on the project and have $13,525.12 left in the budget for it. 

During Director Reports, Apollo Perez discussed putting in accessible parking spots by the livestock barns. 

“I was approached by some families asking if it was possible to put a couple of wheelchair parking spots on the west side of the cattle barns,” Perez said.

The board agreed they could put some accessible parking spots in that area. 

Also during Director Reports, Craig Bowman discussed the Hall of Fame to be put in the new building. 

“We are going to put a Hall of Fame up in the new building,” Bowman said. “We are going have the public nominate whoever they want to nominate. We’ll decide how we are going to have the public vote or a committee outside to do it. Nominations are due June 1st. 

Craig Bowman then moved that vendors who had paid in full before the price increase should not be invoiced. 

“I’m going to make a motion that we accept the people who paid a full rate and not change their rate this year,” Bowman said. “Whoever paid their full payment for fair week, their payments don’t go up. I feel that we worked on their money for a year, and they paid their money.” 

After some discussion between the board members and disagreements on how many vendors had already paid in full, the motion failed with ‘no’ votes coming from Russ Skaggs, Marla Werner, Curtis Yount, Jim Zumbrink, Dean Neff, Apollo Perez, and Greg Pearson. 

During Committee Reports, Marla Werner discussed the grant Darke DD received and the improvement projects to come to the fairgrounds to make the fair more accessible. 

“We received over $100,000 in grant money, approved by the Ohio Board of Developmental Disabilities,” Werner said. That money will go towards converting the Red Cross building into a sensory room, which will also house an adult changing table. Last year, we borrowed Darke DD’s changing table; this one will be ours and will stay here. We are working with different groups to design that.” 

They are also going to either blacktop or concrete gravel areas to make those walkways more accessible, starting with the swine barn and moving to the driveway in front of the goat and sheep barn. 

The Fair Queen and Fair Court have been running a Fair for All campaign to push for a more accessible fair for those with disabilities. This grant’s funding and its projects will help further that campaign.

The board moved to accept this funding and these projects. The motion passed unanimously. 

The board went into an executive session to “consider the appointment, employment, dismissal, discipline, promotion, demotion, or compensation of a public employee or official.” 

After returning from the executive session, the board motioned to give three full-time employees a 5% raise. The motion passed with ‘no’ votes from Craig Bowman, Heidi May, and Greg Pearson. 

The Darke County Fair Board meets on the first Wednesday of every month at 7:30 pm at 800 Sweitzer St., Greenville, Ohio, 45331, in the meeting room across from the fair office. For more information, contact the Fair office at 937-548-5044.