Brown County Commission OK’s electrical work, transformer upgrade for fairgrounds

ABERDEEN, S.D.(Aberdeen American News)- Improvements are coming to the Brown County Fairgrounds.

Fair Manager Rachel Kippley received approval Tuesday for several items that were not in the 2022 budget. During their weekly meeting, county commissioners discussed the possibility of using money set aside in a capital improvement fund for the fairgrounds or the county’s contingency fund to cover the costs.

They include:

  • Rewiring electricity to the east parking lot. The $18,948 bid was awarded to Jim Kramp. This lighting has been powered by a generator during the fair.
  • $5,000 to upgrade transformer capacity to access more power from Northern Electric.
  • As much as $17,500 for up to 60 electric pedestals for campsites. Cost and availability could fluctuate, according to a report presented to commissioners.

Kippley said there is also a need for additional lighting in the parking lots east of the grandstand. For now, though, portable lighting will be used to provide more light in that area.

The transformer upgrade will help accommodate the addition of 60 campsites. But, Kippley said, the work won’t expand the number of campsites at the fairgrounds. Rather, it will allow for the movement of campers out of the 4-H campground so those sites can be re-sized.

While the commission approved the purchase of the pedestals, Kippley said it doesn’t include the cost to install them by an electrician. But she advocated for purchasing the pedestals in advance because of the potential lead time in ordering them. Depending on that lead time, she said, it isn’t known if they’ll be ready for this year’s fair.