PARKER, S.D. (KELO) — Right on schedule, fair season typically falls upon one of the hottest stretches of summer. People attending the Turner County Fair in Parker were definitely feeling the heat Wednesday.
“Welcome to the Turner County Fair. It’s a warm one today, so please stay hydrated,” Turner County Fair Board President Darcy Andersen said.
Fair weather means hot weather at the Turner County Fair. That’s why people come prepared.
“It’s pretty warm out here. It’s sweating warm,” Sheryl Martens of Beresford said.
Sheryl Martens brought an umbrella to shield her from the hot sun, along with a battery-powered neck fan.
“I got it on low so the battery lasts longer,” Martens said.
The weather’s been cooperating in at least one respect for fairgoers. There’s a fairly nice breeze that’s keeping things cooler. But any way you look at it, it’s still very hot here in the midway and everywhere else around the fairgrounds.
The fair sells caps, visors and cooling towels, while homemade vanilla ice cream is a hot commodity.
“We make probably between 250-300 gallons a day,” Brad Carlson of Salem Mennonite Church said.
Members of the Salem Mennonite Church in Freeman have been selling ice cream at the fair for 54 years. But making the cool refreshment takes a little longer when it’s this hot.
“Our batches came out faster on Monday than they are today with the heat and humidity, so they’re taking about five minutes longer than normal,” Carlson said.
Fans are constantly spinning in the livestock barns to help the pigs chill in the shade.
“Everybody does the best they can to take care of the animals. So, the swine are treated a little bit differently than the small animals. Pigs can’t sweat,” Rabbit Superintendent Tami Berens said.
The exhibitors make sure the livestock always have a steady supply of fresh water because just like people, they need to be hydrated to be happy in the heat.
“Make sure you’re taking plenty of breaks and have a wonderful day at the four best days of summer,” Andersen said.
The fair also has a superintendent inside each of the livestock buildings to make sure all the animals have plenty of water available. The Turner County Fair wraps up Thursday.