BELMONT COUNTY, OHIO (WTRF) – This is a rebuilding year for the Belmont County Fair after COVID.

“A lot of vendors were not able to recuperate from the down time and we’ve had a real struggle bringing a lot of them back,” said Fair Board President Ed Campbell.

But speaking of building, a new one was made possible by a $149,000 donation from a man in honor of his children.

“It started out in honor of my daughter, who we lost this year,” said Clifford Collins of Bethesda. “But then we lost her brother in ’97 and he’d been real involved in 4H so we just put it in their names, as well as my daughter Christie who’s still living.”

Another new building on the fairgrounds is the Sheriff’s Office Command Post.

“Deputies can do reports there, and people can stop in to visit,” said Sheriff Dave Lucas. “But this will be used throughout the year, not just for the fair. I’m going to hold other functions here, like fundraisers.”

You can stop in and say hi, and even donate to the Belmont County Dog Park while you’re there.

Many things on the fairgrounds were made by prisoners at Belmont Correctional Institution.

“They do a lot of work around here, prepping for the fair every single year,” said Warden David Gray. “It’s something they look forward to, and I know the fair board has been very thankful for.”

There are some new events and some returning highlights.

“This year we’ll be bringing back some of the motor sports entertainment,” noted Campbell. “Monster trucks, and the national truck pulls.”

“They’ve paved some of the midway, there are new buildings and of course there’s all the amazing rides and all the delicious fair food,” said Jackee Pugh, Belmont County tourism director. “And the youth of our community work so hard with their livestock and their projects all year long.”