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Historic places and people in the land of milk and honey: Wisconsin's treasure: a tribute to our past, a celebration of the present and our commitment to continue the good life

[Walworth County Fair],   p. 97 PDF (367.8 KB)

Page 97

1910 postcard
1915 postcard
149 years ago when Wisconsin was just a
yearling, the first annual fair and cattle
show was held in the village of East Troy on
October 16, 1850. A total of 35 first premi-
ums, 17 second premiums and 3 third pre-
miums were awarded.
The first county fair held in Elkhorn was in
1851 and again in 1852 in the block south-
west of the city park. In 1853 the fair site
was moved to Delavan, but returned to
Elkhorn in 1854. In 1855, the first purchase of
land, from Colonel Edward Elderkin was
made, consisting of 6 acres within the vil-
lage of Elkhorn limits. Many visitors came by
train, with 19 special trains unloading daily
and leaving again each evening after the
races. Today the acreage owned by the
Walworth County Agricultural Society,
incorporated in 1965, is approximately 90
acres, with land and buildings valued in
excess of one million dollars.
With 6 days of near-prefect weather, atten-
dance topped '97 with 177,386 people
going through the gates and recognition
given to Jeff Gould as the fair's 149,000 visi-
tor. Total dollars spent on animals at the
sale was $249,747, down from $283,360 in
'97, Headliners at the evening shows
included Wayne Newton, Tanya Tucker
and David Lee Murphy, with the popular
Demolition Derby for the Labor Day finale.
A prestigious "Blue Ribbon" award was pre-
sented   by   the  U.S. Trotting   Horse
Association to Elkhorn, as one of only 3
county fairs in the nation to be so recog-
nized for the continuity and quality of their
racing program. Standardbred horses
have been racing at the Elkhorn track
since 1905.
With hundreds of activities, the Walworth
County Fair, known as the fair that always
makes good, is indeed "your ticket to fun".

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