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Fair Park Committee
The Jefferson County Fair Park functions year-round under the direction of the Fair Park Director, who is appointed by the
. Policy guidance is provided by the Fair Park Committee. The committee currently consists of 5 Jefferson County Board Supervisors and 2 citizen members:
, Vice Chair
Fair Park Staff
David Diestler, Director
Roger Kylmanen, Supervisor
Amy Listle, Marketing/ Administrative Assistant
Renee Busshardt, Marketing/ Administrative Assistant
Travis Crawford, Maintenance Assistant
Fair Park Budget
The County has a comprehensive budgeting and planning process that covers a better part of the entire year. The budget process is a highly integrated process between the County Administrator, Department Heads, the Finance Committee and the County Board. Throughout the year, the County may receive citizen input through a process that is outlined on the
Jefferson County Website
Click to view the 2016 Fair Park Budget Summary
Click to view the 2015 Fair Park Annual Report
Fair Park History
Established in 1852
Mission Statement – “Jefferson County Fair Park provides a county owned facility for all citizens where young and old can gather to display their talents, accomplishments and celebrate their cultures; thereby promoting education, entertainment and economic growth in Jefferson County.”
Mission Statement Values:
The agricultural community, organizations and citizens have supported the Fair Park for generations. In return this facility will reflect an image to honor their accomplishments and maintain the rural flavor evident throughout Jefferson County.
This recognized and respected facility plays an important role as a year round tourism generator benefiting businesses and citizens of Jefferson County. The County benefits from visitors throughout the Midwest from rental fees and County sales taxes.
The Jefferson County Fair Park is County Owned and Operated with the resolve to demonstrate pride in our facility by being available for a variety of events.
The Jefferson County Fair Park contributes greatly to youth education by showcasing the accomplishments and the identity of our community through the County Fair.
A use study began in 1994. Groups from throughout the County met to discuss where the Fairgrounds should be going. In 1995 20 acres were purchased from John Spangler north of the Fairgrounds to Spangler Road. In 1996, the city constructed a new street through the fairgrounds, North Jackson Avenue, which isolated seven old building outside the fenced fairgrounds. In 1997 a fair park architect/planner was hired. In November 1997 a full report was presented to the County Board which included the Fairgrounds long range plans. At that meeting, it was decided to transfer $1,000,000 from the general fund and bond $2,780,000 for improvements. An extensive amount of infrastructure improvements were done with the storm sewer, sanitary sewer, water and the electrical. New transformers were added. Roads were improved with sidewalks and curb being added with street lamps. A new dairy barn with parlor and horse barn with 94 10’ x 10’ stalls were built along with an additional restroom to the north and food building on the “new food row” area. Fencing and gates were added to enhance the curb appeal of the facility. Blacktop roads and aisles were added to the north parking lot with additional handicap parking. Landscaping including a flag grouping, plantings, trees, sod and park benches and picnic tables for the comfort of fairgoers. By the end of July 1998, we were ready to open just in time for Fair.In 2000 we added the 50’ x 150’ Poultry/Rabbit barn (now used as the Draft Horse Barn) directly west of the Indoor Arena. In 2001 a 40’ addition was added to the front of the Activity Center to get our restrooms ADA compliant. Showers were also included. The Fair office was moved into this building and a conference room was added in this addition. In 2002 the Meat Animal Project Committee raised money to build a 50’ x 100’ steel framed building with County assistance and a loan from the Jefferson Agri-Business Club, had their first sale during Fair 2002. This moved them out of a 60’ x 60’ tent. In March 2003, we purchased 32 acres adjacent to our west fence line. In 2004 we removed the old poultry barn and replaced it with an 80’ x 80’ warm-up arena adjacent to the Indoor Arena. This is used as secondary stalling during Fair and a warm-up area during our many horse shows. In 2004 we built a second outdoor arena, 150’ x 250’, used by the draft horses during fair and additional blacktopping around the Activity Center and post replacement in the Sheep/Goat barn. With additional arena, we will be able to possibly hold two horse shows at one time and larger shows. In 2005 a 55’ x 75’ single slope storage building was built next to the Maintenance Shop to replace the storage building on the East side of the Park. Portable sheep/goat pens were purchased to replace the old wooden pens and this will allow us to remove them and have additional open space. In 2006 we added fencing around the west outdoor arena and added blacktop.In 2010, a 60’ x 112’ free span building was constructed south of the Dairy Barn/Restroom parking lot. This building will be used as the Commercial Building during Fair and secondary stalling for horse shows and other cattle shows.In 2011 we added blacktop east of the Food Row area with power for additional camping and area definition of vendor spaces during the County Fair. We seal coated all existing blacktop as well. A third outdoor arena was added north of the Draft Horse Arena in the spring.In 2012 several projects were carried over into 2013. In 2013 we replaced the concrete in the Picnic Pavilion; added a concrete approach by the Commercial Building and blacktop in the East Parking Lot; new furnaces in the Activity Center and entry way and restrooms/showers of Activity Center; additional camping with electric & water at the North, Northwest and West areas, adding additional transformers; add sanitary sewer by “Food Row”; concrete approach on the north side of the Activity Center and between the Horse & Dairy barns; and security fencing for crowd control. Joint fund raising was done with Dairy Breakfast, MAP and the fair to purchase a “Big Ass Fan” for the MAP building. Several of the older, existing buildings have been re-roofed and re-sided as needed. Painting is done yearly to maintain the appearance of the Fair Park.
We have horse shows every weekend May through October with 244-290 stall capacity. We have a Spring and Fall Car Show & Swap meet, Gemuetlichkeit Days Festival, Dairyland Classic Dog Show in May, Wisconsin Livestock Spring Preview and the Wisconsin Sheep & Wool Festival in September. The Activity Center is rented almost every weekend throughout the year. There are Flea Markets, Family Reunions, Auctions, Dances, Banquets, Home Show, Snowmobile Grass Drags, Picnics, Dairy Shows, Rabbits Shows, Dog shows, Llama & Alpaca, Rabies Clinics, Camping Rallies, Youth Rally, Meetings, Dairy Breakfast, Pet Swaps, and rent out the large stage to area municipalities and Christmas Neighbors.
We also have many 4-H project meetings and horse and dog lessons held at the Fair Park. Land Conservation holds their tree pick up each year. The Sheriff’s Department does several trainings.
We belong to the Wisconsin Association of Fair and the International Association of Fairs and Expos that give us an opportunity to network with fairs from Wisconsin at the State convention in January and with fairs and expositions from all over North American in November.
The Fair Park Committee consists of five members, Ron Buchanan, Chair, Blane Poulson, Vice Chair, Matt Foelker, Secretary, Greg Torres and Paul Babcock.
We do winter storage for vehicles, boats and trailers in six buildings.
We have 5 full time employees, (2) Administrative Marketing Assistants, (1) Fair Park Supervisor, (1) Fair Park Director, (1) Maintenance and (3) less than 1,000 hour maintenance. During the summer we add two additional outside employees, one summer intern in the office, an on-site care taker couple and 15-20 Fair Week employees.
The Grandstand holds 2,200 people with additional seating in bleachers. We have a straight track for truck & tractor pulls, demo derby and concerts.
We can accommodate 199 campers with power, many with water, some with sewer hook-up and have a dump station on site, and have over 30 acres for dry camping available.
Fair Park Food Service Provider RFP
Jefferson County Fair Park
503 N. Jackson Ave - Jefferson, WI 53549
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