August 10, 2005
It's an event that some thought would not happen this year, but against all odds, the Greene County Fair is up and running again, entering its second day on Wednesday.
Fair rides are being checked and food stands are being prepared. It's a site that some didn't see coming in 2005 at the Greene County Fairgrounds.
"We heard rumors that there wasn't going to be an '05 fair," said fair board member, Chip Morris.
Last year in September, the remnants of Hurricane Ivan spawned a fierce tornado that demolished the grounds in Stanardsville. The main building was destroyed, along with two stages, a ticket booth, and two bleachers.
"It tore down just about 100 percent of everything that we had or owned here," said Van Bowman with the Greene County Fair Association.
One of the examples of the damage the tornado left behind last year, a pile of electrical wires and debris. According to fair officials, debris covered the fairgrounds, and crews didn't start clearing it up until April.
The Fair Association and community volunteers pitched in money, time, and energy for a massive cleanup effort.
"It was a lot of tonnage that needed to be hauled off: a lot of nails and a lot of lumber and metal and such," said Morris.
The main structure was also rebuilt along with a new stage. Good news to those who have been part of the fair for years.
"We're really excited about being here and seeing everybody come out and see the work that's been done," said Lynn Wilson with Eastern Henrico Animal Education.
The event is even more important this year, as the association is tapped out of funds.
"If we don't have a successful year this year, we are really going to be in trouble financially," said Bowman.
They're hoping a lot of people will head out to the Greene County Fair, and fair officials are positive that will happen.
The fair runs through Saturday, August 13.