The 155th Washington County Fair is in the books.
This year’s fair was the second in a row to break records for queen candidate tickets and total sales at the Junior Livestock Auction.
Fair President Michael Bentke says this was another great year for the youth of Washington County and all those who took part at the fair.
According to preliminary totals from Bentke, this year’s fair attendance came out to approximately 47,253 paid attendees from Wednesday to Saturday. The numbers are down from 2022’s fair, which had over 52,000 paid guests, but are more than 2021, which saw around 37,000, and are similar to the 46,000 figures seen in 2019 and 2018.
Daily attendance totals for each paid day, per Bentke, were 12,132 on Wednesday, 8,346 on Thursday, 13,296 on Friday and 13,479 on Saturday. The opening weekend and Tuesday of the fair have free entry, so no attendance numbers are available.
The fair kicked off on Saturday, September 16th with the parade in downtown Brenham and the crowning of Katie Seeker as fair queen. Seeker set a new record after selling 5,352 fair tickets for $214,074. She and the other three candidates – MaKayla Hueske, Della Jasinski and Seta Naylor – combined for another new record of $433,613 on 10,840 tickets sold.
The Little and Junior Mister and Miss Contests on Wednesday, September 20th crowned Coleman Michael Conway and Rylie Locke as the Little Mister and Miss, with Bennett Colley and Bailey Rogers receiving the honors for Junior Mister and Miss.
New records were set during the Junior Livestock Auction on Friday, September 22nd, hitting an unofficial total of $1,248,700 and setting eight new high marks for grand and reserve champion lots. Between the Junior Livestock Auction and Saturday’s commercial steer, commercial heifer, colt and country creations auctions, the aggregate is about $2.9 million, but Bentke expects that will grow to over $3 million with add-ons, which itself would also likely be a record.
Bentke says the fair is very appreciative of all the help from the community, whether from the volunteers who take the time to organize the event or from the organizations and businesses who back the participating exhibitors by supporting their projects.
All throughout the fair, guests were treated to entertainment from a varied group of musicians, including the Risky Liver Band, Los Cazadores del Cerro, Los Igualados, Trae Pierce and the T-Stones, William Clark Green, Shane Smith and the Saints, William Beckmann and Gary LeVox of Rascal Flatts fame.
KWHI and KTEX-106 thank all those who came by the fair booth and spun the Wagon Wheel of Prizes. Over $1,100 was raised and will go toward the Boys and Girls Club of Washington County.