Juneau Co. fair officials optimistic but uncertain about grandstand events after tornado damage

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MAUSTON, Wis. (WMTV) – The fate of the Juneau County Fairground Grandstand is undetermined two days after a tornado damaged infrastructure.

The grandstand could be a total loss, but Juneau County Agriculture Society vice president Heidi Finucan said she hopes the show can go on.

“Really, it’s a blessing that this is all,” Finucan said. “It could have been all the land that was gone.”

Without the grandstand, they cannot host the rodeo, demolition derby, or concerts usually held at the Juneau County Fair.

“Some community members have already stepped up and suggested other areas and options that we may have to use and set up for the type of grandstand events,” she said. “But we will find out.”

The tornado also tore through the ticket office and all that remains of this small building are pieces of wood on the ground.

Heidi’s organization leases the fairgrounds from the Juneau County Agricultural Industrial Recreational Society or JCAIR.

Patrick “Mick” McCormick is a JCAIR member and lifelong resident of Juneau County. McCormick said there wasn’t enough information to determine how the fair would go. He shared that an insurer and an architectural engineer will assess the grandstand next week to determine if the structure is a total loss or can be salvaged and used safely.

McCormick spoke optimistically about the fair taking place in August.

“We have time,” he said. “We have a very supportive community and people get involved and things get done.”

“I think no matter what, we will always have some kind of fair. Grandstand events are not the only thing in the fair,” Finucan said. “What really makes the fair is the community coming together. The kids exhibiting to show what the Juneau County area has to offer in the agricultural industry that we have here.

The Animal Show Hall buildings located on the fairgrounds were not damaged in the tornado.

The fair is scheduled for August 14-21.

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