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Weather lifts fair to near-record attendance
Fair End 5 web
A child covers his ears as the Himalaya spins Sunday, the final night for the Cumming Country Fair & Festival. - photo by Micah Green

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* Check out a photo gallery from the fair.

CUMMING — The director of the Cumming Fairgrounds didn’t expect another 11 perfect days for the annual Cumming County Fair & Festival, so he was happy with this year’s attendance.

Dave Horton reported 154,406 people walked through the fair gates between Oct. 2 and Sunday night, which trailed last year’s record attendance of 167,616.

“You always expect two or three [days with rain], but to have that and be so close to our record fair … we would have definitely blown that number away,” Horton said.

He attributed the good attendance to weather concerns that were timed well, such as showers early in the day that cleared in time for families to make it out for an afternoon or evening.

“The crowd seemed to be having a good time, and there were very few problems,” Horton said.

There was the “spitter or two” from the sky lift, he said, but since they can’t run away once they’re up there, that problem was easily handled.

“There are normal things you’d expect with that,” Horton said, “but the vendors were pleased with their sales. There were days with good family values, free admission or rides. There was enough of that mixed in there that gave families the opportunity to come out.”

Although the fair ended just a few days ago, Horton and his team have started thinking about next year.

“We’re always looking to improve, get new acts, different things to bring in to freshen it up,” he said. “As far as building things, we’re kind of maxed out on the property, but there are some areas where maybe we can improve the structures.

“We’re always looking for new ground acts, entertainers. We’re already looking at that, already got some calls out. We’re planning well in advance for the next fair.”