By Russ Pankonin and Jan Schultz
The Imperial Republican
Ticket sales for this year’s grandstand shows at the Chase County Fair & Expo took another jump this week as the shows are little more than a week away.
The Friday, Aug. 16 rock show featuring Styx continues to be the leading seller as of Monday.
This week, sales of Styx reached 39.4 percent. That’s more than a 10 percent gain from the July 29 report.
Sales for Saturday night’s show Aug. 17 have reached 31.9 percent, up nearly nine percent for the week.
Saturday’s country show will feature the music of Justin Moore, with special guests, the Talbott Brothers.
The Talbott brothers, Nick and Tyler, are Imperial natives and will open the show for Moore.
Tickets for Laura Story go on sale Monday at ticket office
Interest in this year’s Wednesday night Christian Family Show has escalated as the date draws closer.
This year’s show will feature Dove and Grammy Award winner Laura Story.
Originally, the $5 tickets were set to go on sale at the ticket office on the day of the show.
However, with the amount of ticket interest being expressed, fair officials decided to put the tickets on sale Monday. Tickets can be purchased in person at the ticket office up until the show Wednesday night.
Ticket office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. now through Tuesday and open until 8 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday.
Fair entertainment chair Alex McNair said interest has really peaked for Story. He said they are anticipating 1,000 to 1,500 people for the show and will be able to accommodate an even larger crowd.
With the ongoing popularity of the Christian Family Show, McNair said they decided to raise the bar this year by bringing in an award-winning Christian singer.
Her most recent album, “Blessings,” was released in April 2011.
There’s no denying some of the blessings in Laura Story’s life. She wrote the No. 1 worship hit “Indescribable” recorded in 2004 by Chris Tomlin.
She married her high school sweetheart-athlete, Martin Elvington, the next year and began working in music and women’s ministry at the 4,000-member Perimeter Church in Atlanta.
After signing an artist deal with INO Records, her 2008 national debut, “Great God Who Saves,” won a Dove Award for Inspirational Album and earned Laura two consecutive nominations for Female Vocalist of the Year.
But amidst that success a brain tumor hospitalized her husband in 2006.
“Life is filled with things you don’t expect, but the Bible tells us to respond by trusting God and continuing to worship him,” Story said.
“Martin hasn’t received complete healing—and that can be hard at times when we view God as all-powerful and all-loving. But here we are now saying, ‘Yes, this is how faith works.’
“God has proven to be faithful. We have been truly blessed out of a circumstance that at first didn’t seem like much of a blessing at all,” she said.
Story’s show begins at 7 p.m. Wednesday night, Aug. 14.
Preceding her show is the annual bratwurst supper from 5 to 7 p.m. near the grandstand area. Proceeds will benefit the Mercy Meals program headquartered in Wauneta.
The evening closes with an 8 p.m. square dance.
Ranch Rodeo, mutton
bustin’, frozen t-shirt
contest happen early
Tuesday and Wednesday will feature a number of fun events as the fair kicks into gear.
While much of Tuesday is concentrated on early 4-H shows and entering exhibits, there are two events in the rodeo arena that day, too.
The Ranch Rodeo starts at 5 p.m. and will feature four-person teams competing on horseback in several challenge events. Coordinator Chance Skomp said the maximum of 10 teams was filled early.
The teams will try to tally the fastest times in these events—calf branding, trailer loading, penning and straight cow gathering. Cash prizes and tack will be awarded.
At 6 p.m. Tuesday, also in the rodeo arena, is the Barnyard Scramble, an event for the younger set (toddlers to 12 yrs.).
Coordinator Jacci Brown said everyone will compete in the same division, line up and go after a group of animals all released at once. Youths will try to catch a chicken or pull the ribbon off the mini donkeys, pigs and other animals in the arena. Everyone will go home with a prize, she said.
In addition to opening of the expo, the 4-H building exhibits and the carnival, two other fun, competitive events are on tap for Wednesday, Aug. 14.
Youths age five, six and seven always show up in strong numbers for the mutton bustin’ contest at 3 p.m. Wednesday.
Coordinator Kenny Smith said youngsters will be challenged to ride a ewe for up to six seconds in the rodeo arena. Things happen fast, but those youngsters staying on the longest will go home with some big trophies.
Smith recommends parents bring their kids early to get registered, up to 45 minutes beforehand. Parents must sign a waiver and kids are weighed so they don’t exceed the 60-pound weight limit.
At 4 p.m. in the arena will be the frozen t-shirt contest. Participants of all ages will see who can unwrap a frozen, bundled up t-shirt the quickest. All participants will go home with the Chase County Fair t-shirt they worked at unwrapping, with the goal being to be the fastest unwrapper, said coordinator Scott Way.
The helicopter rides return to the fair this year, starting Wednesday and continuing through Saturday, provided by DWTA Helicopters. For a charge, the rider will get a scenic view over the fairgrounds. Helicopters will take off and land from the school playground across 9th Street from the fairgrounds.
2013 early fair week schedule
SUNDAY, AUGUST 11
8 a.m.—4-H Horse Show (rodeo arena)
TUESDAY, AUGUST 13
8 a.m.—4-H Dog Show (open air pavilion)
10:30 a.m.—4-H Cat Show or immediatlely after dog show (open air pavilion)
8-11 a.m.—Enter 4-H, FFA and Open Class Exhibits
11 a.m.—All Market Beef, Sheep and Swine Entered
4:30 p.m.—4-H, FFA & Open Livestock Judging Contest
5 p.m.—Ranch Rodeo, sponsored in part by Brophy Electric and AK Acres Popcorn Co. (rodeo arena)
6 p.m.—Barnyard Scramble (ages toddlers - 12 yrs.) sponsored in part by Markee Ag and Added Touch Flowers & Gifts (rodeo arena)
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 14
8:30 a.m.—4-H and FFA Swine Show (show arena)
11 a.m.—4-H and FFA Goat and Sheep Show, Dress Your Lamb Contest (show arena)
12 noon—All Breeding Beef, Feeder Calves and Bucket Calves entered
12 noon-7 p.m.—Expo open
12 noon-6 p.m.—Helicopter rides (load at school playground)
12:30 p.m.—4-H Exhibit building opens
2 p.m.—4-H and FFA Poultry and Rabbit Show (show arena)
3 p.m.—Mutton Bustin’ Contest, ages 5-7, 60 lb. limit (rodeo arena)
3 p.m.—Homemade ice cream & pie by Champion Community Center (Hughes Farm Supply Booth)
3-12 midnight—Lions Club Bingo (Lions stand, fairgrounds)
4 p.m.—Frozen T-Shirt Contest (all ages, rodeo arena)
5-11 p.m.—Carnival open ($20 unlimited rides)
5-7 p.m.—Bratwurst Supper Benefit for Mercy Meals (near grandstand)
7 p.m.—Christian Family Show—Laura Story, coordinated by Ministerial Association of Southwest Nebraska (grandstand)
8 p.m.—Square Dance—Dean Dederman, caller (open air auditorium)
8:30 p.m.—4-H Exhibit building closes.