A Famously Successful 2016 Western Idaho Fair
By resident corndog eating champion Mike Gerhardt
The results are in—and we couldn’t be prouder of how the 2016 Western Idaho Fair turned out!
All in all, over 240,000 people came out for this year’s Fair to take in the sights and sounds, pose for legendary selfies, and spot local barnyard celebrities—for an overall attendance boost of 5%. Plus, more people took part in fame-making competitive exhibits than last year. Carnival operators Butler Amusements had their best Western Idaho Fair ever, and their best single day at the Fair ever on August 27. And the livestock show generated nearly 20% more money for the young FFA and 4-H participants than last year, including a Grand Champion Beef sale of nearly $13,000!
The highlights of this year’s Fair for me were many (and often revolved around music). CLM helped launch the first-ever Fair’s Got Talent competition to showcase the skills of the general public. After auditions, social media voting, then a final showdown of the top 10, a great singer-songwriter sister act ended up taking home the fame and glory (plus a truckload of prizes). On Friday night, the 26th, my colleagues at CLM and I had the chance to take in a truly awesome Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo concert with over 11,000 of our closest Idaho friends. That concert, by the way, was the second most popular concert of the Fair, with the blue ribbon going to Tuesday’s headliner Josh Turner. Besides the concert, I had a blast taking animal selfies, riding all of the rides I could, and gorging on some fried goodness (unfortunately, not in that precise order).
Next year, we’ll be celebrating the Western Idaho Fair’s 120th year. We’re looking forward to another successful year, and another great campaign to highlight the joy the Fair brings to thousands in Idaho and beyond. See you next August!