Work projects going full tilt to prepare for fair

CLEARFIELD – Upgrades to the Clearfield Driving Park’s electrical system and a new roof for the poultry barn top the list of work projects volunteers are completing to ready for the Clearfield County Fair, July 31 – Aug. 5.

According to Greg Hallstrom, Fair and Park Board director who oversees the work parties, “One storm tore off the far end of the roof and we knew we had to replace that much so we decided  to do it all. We’re trading aluminum for galvanized steel, which will make a more durable roof.”

The project could be funded by a state Department of Agriculture grant; a $5,000 one (with an equal match from the board) is already funding new electrical panels throughout the park.

The new metal units replace wooden boxes, most that were installed in the early 1980s, Hallstrom noted, and they are being standardized with 200-ampere services.

“We needed the upgrade for safety reasons and also because the concessions are getting bigger and they require more electricity,” Hallstrom said.

“We’re also moving to a more permanent structure, from wood to metal and, for example, outlet boxes permanently installed on the bottom of the boxes. Used to be, we wired the outlet box on and took it back off when the fair was over.”

There are 43 electrical panels; 15 have been upgraded over the last three years and possibly five more will be done before this year’s fair, he said.

Other preparations include the placement of portable bleachers, built by 4-H Club members, that will be located around the park for viewing events like the woodcarver and pig races, filling in eroded areas of the horse barn, painting the Evaluation Center floor, and myriad minor repairs and maintenance.

“This is not a bigger year, job-wise, it’s just all the jobs are big,” Hallstrom noted.

Between 20-40 volunteers, mostly Clearfield Fire Department members, attend the evening and Sunday work sessions, a decrease from past years, according to Bob Withey, who keeps track of their hours.

“We’re down on the number of non-members helping and down in overall numbers. I don’t know where they all are,” he added.

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