The 116th version of the Adams County Fair is going to be a little different just because it follows 2020. “Yeah, life has changed dramatically,” said Casandra Vossler, Adams County fair and …
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The 116th version of the Adams County Fair is going to be a little different just because it follows 2020.
“Yeah, life has changed dramatically,” said Casandra Vossler, Adams County fair and special event’s manager. “It’s been an interesting year, not just for this industry but for the world at large. There are staffing shortages, supply shortages. It’s been crazy.”
COVID-19 convinced Adams County to close down the bulk of the fair’s events in 2020. Only the 4H animal and crop contests went forward last year.
“We were lucky enough that a lot of the artists and vendors that we’d planned to have in 2020 just rolled things forward to 2021,” Vossler said. “But what we thought would be a really easy year to plan wasn’t that easy.”
A number of contractors and performers the fair wanted to bring in this year waited to confirm their appearances until the last couple of weeks.
“There wouldn’t commit because Colorado was a state that closed down last year,” Vossler said. “There were states that didn’t close down and they were able to work there. But they wouldn’t commit to us right away until they knew for sure we were going to be open.”
The event stages a big 2021 comeback beginning Aug. 4, with two different rodeo events, plenty of live music and fun.
There will be changes, however.
“We have big acts and band coming in, but the overall feeling that has us excited is getting to bring the community back together after last year,” she said.
The children’s area will see some of the biggest changes, Vossler said. Previous fairs have featured bouncy houses and activities meant to get kids together to play.
“We are still having the Kids Zone but it is more of a stage area than anything else,” she said. “The typical Kids Zone had bouncy houses and paddleboards. With kids being vaccinated, it became a safety issue. So we downsized that area and now have more ground acts and more stage acts to entertain the kids, rather than make them jump around on each other.”
Those ground acts include stilt walkers the Animal Cracker Conspiracy and the Great Dubois flying trapeze acrobats.
Bi-lingual performer Twinkle will also offer regular performances the kids’ area.
All events will be hosted at the Riverdale Regional Park, 9755 Henderson Road in Brighton. The fair runs through Aug. 8.
Rodeo and music
Country performer Michael Ray will take the Grandstand Stage at 8 p.m. Aug. 4, featuring free admission.
The traditional rodeo portion kicks off at 5 p.m. Aug. 5 with a concert by the Eli Young Band, and special guests the Junebugs. The evening also features the Professional Bull Riders contest. Tickets for the concert are $10 for the concert alone or $14 for both the concert and the bull riding. Special VIP tickets cost $75 and include two drink tickets, snacks, private restrooms a cash bar and corral-side seating to watch the bull riding.
Events continue Aug. 6 with a Demolition Derby — tickets are $20 per adult, $10 per child — and Aug. 7 with a daylong cornhole tournament.
Sunday will be the biggest day of the fair with the Dia de La Familia and a Mexican Charreada rodeo.
“We have three bands coming for that and that’s different for us,” she said. “We normally have one act, and they are pretty big acts.”
Tickets for the Charreada will be $20 for adults, $15 for children and $75 for VIPs.
“We are pretty excited. The overall feeling for my staff and, I think, the county as a whole is that we are excited to bring the community back together after such a tough year.”
Tickets to all the events can be purchased online at adamscountyfair.com or in person at Riverdale Regional Park.
Parking at Riverdale Regional Park is $10 per vehicle and spaces are limited.
The county offers free off-site parking at Prairie View High School, 12909 E. 120th Ave. in Brighton and Riverdale Ridge High School, 13380 Yosemite St. and Shadow Ridge Middle School, 12551 Holly St. in Thornton.
Shuttles will run between those lots and the fair every 20 minutes. Riders must wear masks on the shuttle, Vossler said, whether they are vaccinated or not.
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