Lyon County fair changing; but still features family fun |

Lyon County fair changing; but still features family fun

Karen Woodmansee
Appeal Staff Writer

Like many other aspects of life in Lyon County, the annual Lyon County Fair and Rodeo is changing.

Steve Berrington, chairman of the Lyon County Fair Board, said there are fewer livestock entries than in past years, and attributes it to increased development taking the place on ranches in Dayton and other Lyon County communities.

“There’s very little livestock anymore,” he said. “You might get a couple of steers, sheep and pigs, but it’s getting less and less on the livestock end of it.”

Yet the fair, which begins today and runs through Sunday at the Lyon County Fairgrounds near Yerington, will still offer lots of other family-oriented events, Berrington said. “Young people today often enter photos, quilts, fruits and vegetables, birdhouses and other crafts,” he added.

Amanda Van Pelt, 15, of Fernley, is one of those young people, entering in the crafts section a nonedible “doll” cake, with the cake part being the doll’s dress.

She has not sworn off animal involvement, however, she’s entering her two dogs, an English setter and a dachshund, in the dog show.

Amanda, who will be a sophomore at Fernley High School, has been entering in the fair for the past six years. She said all her friends are involved with the fair.

“I like the experience of competition, of being critiqued on my work so I know what I can improve on,” she said. “And I like seeing what other people do.”

Children are the main focus of Thursday night, called Kids’ Night, with a carnival, BMX bike races, a pedal tractor pull, sack races and a pig scramble.

In the pig scramble, Berrington said, they turn two or three greased pigs loose in the arena where 30 kids are lined up to try and catch the slippery porkers.

“To watch these kids chase the pigs around, and try to catch them when they’re so slick, it’s great,” Berrington said. “The kids really enjoy it.”

Berrington said more than 100 children, grouped by height and age, were signed up to participate in the pig scramble.

Kids can also have fun at the carnival held all four days of the fair.

Friday will feature a frog jump, kid fiddlers and a variety of entertainment, as well as a hay squeeze and hay-stacking competition, proving not all the farm fun is over.

Berrington said a hay squeeze is a type of forklift designed to squeeze the bottom of a stack of hay bales for moving and loading. He said the hay squeeze and stacking contest will involve an obstacle course of sorts for the hay squeezes carrying and stacking hay.

On Friday and Saturday nights, folks can dance to both country and Hispanic music from 9:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.

Saturday’s festivities will begin with a pancake breakfast and a parade down Main Street. The professional rodeo will be at 12:30 p.m., and a truck and tractor pull will begin at 5 p.m.

Sunday will begin with a dog show and a church service, and end with a demolition derby. In between will be more rodeo, a 4-H fashion show and a cowboy-stew cooking contest.

• Contact reporter Karen Woodmansee at or 882-2111 ext. 351.

If you go


• General admission – free

• Rodeo – $7 adult, $3 12 and under

• Truck & Tractor Pull – $7 adult, $3 12 and under

• Demolition derby – $10 adult, $5 12 and under.



• 8 a.m.-5 p.m. – Setup of exhibit area and judging


• 8 a.m.-5 p.m. – Setup of exhibit area and judging


• 8 a.m.-4 p.m. – Exhibit hall setup

• 4 p.m. – Ribbon cutting, fairgrounds

• 4-10 p.m. – Carnival

• 5 p.m. – Horseshoe Pitching Contest

• 6-7:30 p.m. – Kids’ Night – BMX bike races

• 7:30-9 p.m. – Pedal tractor pull, sack races, tug-o-war and hula hoop contest.

• 9-10 p.m. – Pig scramble


• 8 a.m. – 4-H horse show

• 4 p.m. – Fairgrounds open

• 4-10 p.m. – Carnival

• 5-5:30 p.m. – Frog jump

• 5:30 p.m. – Kid Fiddlers, main stage

• 7-8 p.m. – Variety of entertainment

• 7-10 p.m. – Hay squeeze and hay-stacking contest

• 9:30 p.m.-1:30 a.m. – Dance under the Stars with the Dosie Doe band

• 9:30 p.m.-1:30 a.m. – Hispanic music and dancing


• 6-8 a.m. – Pancake breakfast

• 10 a.m. – Parade, downtown

• 10 a.m.-1:30 a.m. – Fairgrounds open

• 10 a.m.-10 p.m. – Carnival

• 12:30-3:30 p.m. – Rodeo

• 2:30 p.m. – Kid Fiddlers, main stage

• 4-4:45 p.m. – Wind Spirit Native American Dancing

• 4 p.m. – Kid Fiddlers, main stage

• 5 p.m. – Little cowboy & cowgirl contest

• 5:30-10 p.m. – Truck pulls

• 9:30 p.m.-1:30 a.m. – Dance under the Stars with the Dosie Doe band

• 9:30 p.m.-1:30 a.m. – Hispanic music and dancing


• 8 a.m. – 4-H dog show

• 9 a.m. – Church service

• 9 a.m. – 4-H speech & demonstration contests

• 10 a.m. – 4-H & FFA livestock show

• 10 a.m.-8 p.m. – Carnival

• 11 a.m. – Kid Fiddlers, main stage

• 11 a.m.-6 p.m. – Variety of Entertainment

• 12:30-3:30 p.m. – Rodeo

• 2 p.m. – 4-H fashion revue

• 4 p.m. – Cowboy-stew cook-off and judging

• 5-8 p.m. Removal of exhibits

• 8-10 p.m. Demolition derby

• 11 p.m. – Fair closes