Community Agriculture Alliance: Routt County Fair returning for 107th year |

Community Agriculture Alliance: Routt County Fair returning for 107th year

Jill Delay
For Steamboat Pilot & Today

An open invitation to all Routt County locals, neighbors and visitors: Entering its 107th year, the Routt County Fair is an event so rich with heritage and local lore that we like to say, “You can’t call yourself a local until you’ve experienced the Routt County Fair.” Enjoy one of Routt County’s longest running traditions, the Routt County Fair, from Aug. 19-22 at the fairgrounds in Hayden.

While sometimes confused with the rodeo grounds in Steamboat Springs, the Routt County Fairgrounds are located in Hayden just south of U.S. Highway 40 on Poplar Street on the same tract of land it’s been held on for the past 107 years.

We’ve come a long way since 1914, but the “feeling” of the fair remains the same, according to Sandy Boston, of Hayden, who says, “Because no matter where you’re from, a big city or a little town, the Routt County Fair makes you feel like you’ve come home.”

The Routt County Fair was born of a time when “children did chores, arrowheads could be found on the back 40, and ice was cut from the river.” Since then, we’ve seen “the outhouse hauled away, the plow horse replaced by a John Deere and farm kids majoring in agribusiness.” The fair honors the pioneers who gathered at the Routt County fairgrounds 107 years ago to share laughter and lies.

Since the grandstands were built in 1916, the Fair Advisory Board has hosted champion riders and legendary bucking stock. Since 4-H clubs were organized in the 1920s and a junior livestock sale launched in 1959, clubs are generating in excess of $300,000, used to purchase livestock or fund college tuition. Since exhibits were added in 1929, the Routt County Fair has encouraged education and excellence in youth, production standards for cattlemen and woolgrowers, and civic pride in visitors.

Participate in The Longevity Project

The Longevity Project is an annual campaign to help educate readers about what it takes to live a long, fulfilling life in our valley. This year Kevin shares his story of hope and celebration of life with his presentation Cracked, Not Broken as we explore the critical and relevant topic of mental health.

The creative handiworks of local artists, cooks, photographers, gardeners, bakers, quilters, moms, dads and youth are displayed in the Exhibit Hall, where you will find hand-carved furniture, quilts, baked goods, produce, flowers, canned goods, photographs and much more. Prizes are awarded to the best of the best in each category, and everyone is encouraged to enter.

Don’t miss out on one minute of all the excitement and tradition at the Routt County Fair. The fair will celebrate the community’s heritage with several days of horse and livestock shows, home arts exhibits, demolition derby, live music, gymkhanas, youth rodeo events, bonfire with live music, funnel cakes, hearty barbecue, neighbors and family-friendly fun. Aug. 13-15 are the open horse show and ranch sorting; Aug. 16-21 are the 4-H shows and activities; Aug. 18 home arts entries are due; and Aug. 19-22, the fair is in full swing.

Meet your friends and neighbors at the 107th annual Routt County Fair. For a complete schedule and the latest fair information, visit or follow the Routt County Fair & Fairgrounds on Facebook.

Jill Delay is manager and fair coordinator with Routt County Fairgrounds.

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