Attendance down nearly 100,000 at State Fair

HURON, S.D. (DRG News) – Attendance was down nearly 100,000 people compared to last year, but the manager of the South Dakota State Fair in Huron says she’s pleased with this year’s total.

South Dakota State Fairgrounds manager Peggy Besch says the nearly 108,000 (107,992) attendees spent around $1.3 million on goods, beverages, specialty concessions and carnival rides. In addition, she says, there were 290 commercial exhibitors, concessionaires and vendors showcased.

Besch says the fair was a success in part, due to additional safety measures in place because of the COVID-19 pandemic– including hand sanitizing stations, extra hand washing stations, social distancing and enhanced cleaning and disinfecting protocols.

The 135th annual fair, held Sept. 3-7, included almost 1,600 exhibitors entering more than 8,300 exhibits in various open class livestock and non-livestock competitions. There were nearly 800 FFA entries and over 3,000 4-H livestock and static exhibit entries. Open class exhibitors took home more than $92,000 in premiums. There was a 10% increase in livestock exhibitors and a 16% overall increase in entries.

The 2021 South Dakota State Fair will be held Sept. 2-6, 2021.