Garfield ‘county affair’ takes place August 3-12 |

Garfield ‘county affair’ takes place August 3-12

Samantha PalGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado

RIFLE For its 69th year, Garfield County Fair will kick off at the fairgrounds in Rifle on Aug. 3-12, promising to be a “county affair,” as this year’s theme states.One purpose of the fair is to keep the historical value intact, says fair board president Jim Sheets. However, the fair also wanted to address the interests of a growing county.”Our community has changed so drastically,” Sheets said, “and it’s so diverse.”Because of this the fair has added new attractions to draw a more diverse crowd, namely a horse whisperer and equestrian jumping.Colton Walter, a horse whisperer who has been breaking horses on the Western Slope for 23 years, is rumored to be able to break a horse that has never been handled in three hours, and he will demonstrate his skill for fairgoers, said Renelle Lott, fair marketing and sponsorship specialist.High Desert Hunter Jumper Association is an equestrian jumping nonprofit that will sanction the hunter jumper event at the fair, a form of English riding where horses and riders jump obstacles. The event is open to all ages and skill levels, and to anyone who wants to watch.Old favorites such as children’s, junior and pro rodeos will return, along with a free ice cream social before the junior rodeo. The Garfield County Fair Parade is set for 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 11, on Railroad Avenue. Entry information is available at the Rifle Chamber of Commerce.Live music this year will come in the form of Little River Band and Tracy Byrd, playing Texas country music.The fairgrounds also will have some noticeable improvements this year. The fair board increased the number of horse stalls, built a new “crows nest” for event broadcasters, paved the parking lot, added 20 new RV spots and built new facilities for vendors. For a full event schedule and more information, visit Samantha Pal: 384-9105spal@postindependent.comPost Independent, Glenwood Springs Colorado CO

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