In 2002, the Columbiana County Fair and Steer Committee began fundraising efforts for a new beef complex. These efforts, over several years, resulted in approximately $35,000, at which time the project was put on hold. In 2007, the need for the beef complex was once again addressed, and the decision was made, due to safety concerns, to demolish the old steer barn/sheep barn. Fundraising attempts were under way again, and the donations began coming in.
After a significant contribution was made in March 2008, thanks to the J. Herbert Thompson family, construction of the project began. With the help of countless individuals and supporters, the complex was completed for the 2008 fair and dedicated Aug. 1, 2008.
Financially, the total cost of the project was $250,000. This reflects the amount of money that was actually spent. When you take into consideration the donated materials and labor, this amount would be doubled.
We are now proud to say, in 2011, the beef complex is paid off and we are debt free. The Columbiana County Fair board did not contribute financially to this project. It was paid in full by donations, which is such an impressive testament to what a great community we live in.
The fair board is sincerely grateful to all contributors and cannot thank everyone enough for their generosity. It never would have been possible without the many individuals and businesses that gave of their time and resources.
It is the hope of the fair board that our community can take pride in the fact that your support was instrumental in making this project a reality and those future generations can enjoy our fair in the years to come.
(The author is manager of the Columbiana County Fair.)