S.D. State Fair Commission sets new goals

Capitol News Bureau

HURON, S.D. (KELO) — The South Dakota State Fair Commission spent Tuesday developing a strategic plan for the next three years.

State Agriculture and Natural Resources Secretary Hunter Roberts meanwhile said the new Dakota Events Complex aka “The DEX” won’t be completed until mid-2023.

Governor Kristi Noem originally wanted the $22 million livestock and equestrian center opened by the 2021 State Fair in September.

Roberts told KELOLAND News on Tuesday that supply-chain issues were a reason for the delay.

State Fair manager Peggy Woolridge-Besch said she’s looking forward to working on the new goals.

They include:

Increasing daily attendance during the State Fair by 5% each of the next three years.

Finding efficiencies in getting people onto the grounds during the five-day fair.

Tripling non-fair revenue during the next three years.

Strengthening and building partnerships.

Securing funding for additional staff.

The commission discussed possible strategies for each one.

Consultant Cindy Peterson of Salem will put together a report.

“The ideas coming out of here are fantastic,” commission member Jim White of Huron told her.

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