Here’s what’s new at the McHenry County Fair this year!
Barnyard Buddies, located in the east side of the Beef Barn, is a small-animal educational expo. Fairgoers can learn about animals and listen to volunteers talk about their 4-H projects Aug. 1 to 4. New this year is an auction in Hansen Pavilion for blue-ribbon small animals. The 4-H Wether/Fur/Feather Sale is 6 p.m. Aug. 3.
Milk-A-Cow booth in the dairy barn will return. Many people stood in line last year to milk a cow. Another popular event, the Mother/Daughter Look-a-Like contest, will be in Hansen Pavilion at 6 p.m. Aug. 2, and there’s a homemade wine competition Aug. 3 at 7 p.m. in Hansen Pavilion (with samples available after judging). Wool spinning demonstrations will be held in the Sheep Barn on Aug. 4 and 5 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
For children, the Pedal Pulls are outside the 4-H building Aug. 3 and 4 at 1 p.m. Pedal Pull registration and sign-up for the bubble-blowing contest starts at noon both days.
Entries for the fair must be received or postmarked by Saturday. Free admission is offered to veterans every day of the fair. Veterans will be honored Aug. 2 with a 21-tractor salute.
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Two men intimately associated with the McHenry County Fair since they helped with the revival of this annual event in 1949 will be honored on different days during the Aug. 1 through 4 fair in Woodstock.
Aug. 1 will be Don Peasley day at the fair. I was closely involved with advance publicity and photographs prior to the 1949 revival of the McHenry County Fair, and I’ve been involved each year since then with public relations, photographs and historical memories of the people and activities that make the fair an outstanding tribute to 4-H members. The fair board will honor me during the queen contest. It will be an emotional trip for me “down memory lane.”
Nancy Fike, McHenry County Historical Society director, is choosing from a collection of my photos for a special display in Building D.
On Aug. 2, Stuart Wells – who turned 90 on Feb. 13 – will be recognized for his 60 years as a volunteer and project chairman. Wells, a Harvard resident, will be honored for his service as a 4-H leader and 4-H Foundation board member.
Wells graduated from Harvard High School in 1940. He joined 4-H in 1936 and started showing his projects in 1937. He attended Northwestern University for three years before working on the family farm.
• Don Peasley has been editor, columnist and historian in McHenry County since 1947. He began his association with Shaw Publications in October 1950. He is a frequent contributor of articles and photographs. 815-338-1533.