PAULDING — Attractions may come and go at many county fairs, but this year’s Paulding County Fair is in the midst of ongoing improvements which keep building from year to year.
Heather Cooper, secretary of the Paulding County Agriculture Society, stated that one of the planned improvements hasn’t happened yet, but it’s on the minds of many.
“Our grandstand was built in 1872,” she said, “and when something is built in 1872, it’s obviously going to need improvements.”
“They don’t want it torn down,” added board member Susan Miller. “We’re out to get a grant.”
While hopes are to make the new grandstand — whenever it appears — larger than the present facility, grants exist to replenish an original building rather than simply destroying it.
Not that the fair board has anything against novelty. In recent years the swine, poultry and goat barns have all been removed and replaced with newer, sturdier structures.
“We got sponsorships to do all three (at the same time),” noted Cooper, who believed the brand new structures were erected five years ago.
Newer still are the additions to the horse barns. While the older facilities remain intact, new stalls were added onto the structures just last year.
And the upgrades continue. “We’re getting money toward a new rabbit barn,” Miller said. “They have to have the new barn up first before they tear the old one down.”
Like the horse barns, the fair board plans to have new stalls added to the existing beef barns, “within the next year or two... we hope,” Miller added.
Some of the planned upgrades are unlikely to be seen or even noticed by the general public, which does not make it any less necessary. “Water lines will have to be redone,” said Miller.
New this year are roofing jobs on many of the existing buildings, most notably the grange building, which features new roofing and siding as well. However, perhaps recognizing the value of the past, the inside of the grange building remains in its original state.
“It’s used for domestic arts,” said Miller, “sewing, flowers, antiques.”
Other smaller improvements include new gravel in the back of the grounds where tractors are placed on display, and a newly-refurbished gazebo with new ramps and floor sealing. “The 4-H club did that,” Miller said of the gazebo.
For now, while in the midst of continual improvements from fair to fair, the board hopes to keep them coming — one year at a time.
“We’re trying to keep everything moving forward,” Cooper said.