‘It’s Iowa … we’re used to it’: County fair season begins despite record heat

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WORTH COUNTY, IOWA — As the temperatures crept near triple digits in northern Iowa on Thursday, the horse competition was heating up at the Worth County Fair.

The fair, one of the first in the state this year, began on Wednesday with slightly cooler temperatures. On Thursday, there was little escape from the heat, though. The horse competitions were carried out in full sun, with audience members finding whatever shade they could.

Organizers and participants say the health and safety of all people and animals is paramount on days like today.

“We have a lot of water stations around, we have tents set up for all the gate help, we have our local county vet that goes around, he’s constantly looking animals making sure that all the animals have plenty water. We emphasize that to the 4Hers,” says Fair President Chad Nelson, “There are some things we could need to do to manage that but you know: it’s Iowa we’re kind of used to it.”

There is a rodeo scheduled for Thursday evening at the Worth County Fair, though there is severe weather in the forecast. The fairgrounds was recently remodeled and now includes a storm shelter in the basement of the administration building and restrooms with reinforced walls.

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