Dairy barn

Children's eyes are wide as they tour the dairy barn at the Northwest Washington Fair in Lynden. (Calvin Bratt/Lynden Tribune)

Attendance up over last year, consistent over last 10 years

LYNDEN ­— The 2019 Northwest Washington Fair again was a safe and quality way to “create memories that will last a lifetime,” in keeping with this year’s theme, fair manager Jim Baron said.

Blessed by good weather, attendance at the six-day fair was up over last year. "Over the last ten years, our attendance is really consistent,” Baron said.

Although there could be different highlights for the people of all ages who attend, “I think one of the most significant things is that we operate in such a safe environment. That is a real tribute to our community,” he said.

The manager called the two days of Lynden PRCA Rodeo “exceptional again this year.” And he credits it to a volunteer committee that is passionate about rodeo and works hard to make sure Lynden offers one of the best rodeos around for size.

“I am always surprised how many top rodeo contestants we are able to attract. Our community is definitely responding to the quality of rodeo we have developed. Attendance at the rodeo continues to grow every year,” Baron said.

The fact of having a new Farm Pavilion building done in time for the 2019 fair was celebrated with thank-yous to the Exxel Pacific building team and financial contributors, and yet a challenge was put out to try to have the Farming for Life Experience exhibit inside it also finished by the 2020 fair.

“We are very appreciative of all their cooperation. We are looking forward to beginning the next phase now to raise funds to complete the Farming for Life Experience,” Baron said.

The Photography department won a Black and White award presented by the state Fair Commission. Peggy Deem is the superintendent of that department and was recognized for the extra effort needed to move into the new building as well.

Approximately $100,000 is awarded to fair exhibitors each year. 

The music tribute and recognition of military personnel on Wednesday, a new event went well, Baron said. “We were really pleased with how many people turned out for the ‘Retreat’ ceremony.”

There are just many people to thank for making the fair happen as it does each year, he said:  exhibitors, volunteers, superintendents, employees, all those who take vacation time to come and help out. And Baron is especially appreciative of all the people “who bring themselves, their children and grandchildren, to be entertained, to eat, to be educated and to support our young people in all their projects.”