Monroe County Fair enjoys its best year yet

Jeremy Rettig prepares to bring his cow into the ring during Thursday’s 4-H livestock auction. More photos are in this week’s paper and in our Media Store. (Kermit Constantine photo)

To view and purchase photos from this year’s Monroe County Fair, from the Figure 8 and the horse shows, to fun around the fairgrounds, click here.

The beautifully colored Sunday evening sunset served as a fitting backdrop for the conclusion of this year’s Monroe County Fair, which some considered the best in the event’s 66-year history.

Unseasonably cool summer weather contributed to record crowds throughout the week at the fairgrounds — and not just for the always popular Friday night auto demolition derby.

“It was probably the best attended Monroe County Fair ever,” Monroe County Fair Association Secretary George Obernagel said. “Words can’t describe it. People just loved it.”

Crowds flocked to the fairgrounds Thursday night for the free gate admission and Carnival Armband Night for youngsters, as well as a concert performed by Butch Wax and the Hollywoods as part of HTC Customer Appreciation Night.

Thursday’s livestock auction raised $170,000 for local 4-H and youth programs. That figure is just $2,000 less than last year’s record auction total.

Other popular fair nights drew the usual solid crowds, including last Wednesday’s Figure 8 Race and the truck and tractor pull events on Monday, Tuesday and Saturday evenings.

Pictured, Valmeyer FFA members Will Wuertz and Kevin Mosbacher participate in the hay bale toss during FFA Fun Night. (Corey Saathoff photo)

Sunday’s FFA Fun Night drew its largest crowd ever, Obernagel said, as the new Columbia and Gibault FFA programs joined in the action. They competed against the Valmeyer, Waterloo and Red Bud chapters for bragging rights. It marked the first time all five local chapters participated in the fair event.

Obernagel said most of the food stands reported record sales, along with the carnival rides and beer stand.

The annual Monroe County Fair offers a week chock full of activities and events that celebrate the agricultural roots of the county while offering entertainment for the whole family.

“It was just the most fantastic fair in our 66 years,” Obernagel said. “We thank all the volunteers who help make this possible and the community for its continuous support.”

For information on next year’s fair once it becomes available, visit online at

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Corey Saathoff

Corey is the editor of the Republic-Times. He has worked at the newspaper since 2004, and currently resides in Columbia. He is also the principal singer-songwriter and plays guitar in St. Louis area country-rock band The Trophy Mules.
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