County commissioners restructure Fair Board


The Board of County Commissioners approved an ordinance on Tuesday, April 16, amending the county code to restructure the Fair Board, a citizen-led group that helps coordinate the county fairgrounds and the annual Thurston County Fair.

The Fair Board currently has 16 members. Of these, 10 are at-large members, and the rest represent the former three county districts. The amendment did not change the size of the board but restructured it so that two members represent each county district, while the number of at-large members was reduced to six.

The current members will be retained, but they will be reapportioned so that they represent the district in which they live.

Operations Manager Jeremy Davis added that the ordinance also fixes the term length of every Fair Board member to four years. The current term length of each board member lasts from two to four years, depending on the member's position.

The county commissioners could also appoint ex offico non-voting members to assist other members with their work.

Davis also mentioned that the ordinance updates the county code to authorize the county manager to set fees for the site, allowing for regular fee updates.

The Board of County Commissioners held a public hearing on the ordinance before deciding to approve it. Only local resident Jon Pettit commented on the issue, saying that he supported the ordinance but appealed that the county invest further in the fairgrounds.

“More community support is good, but we're also going to need to be considering the future upgrades to what we have right now. What we have right now, I hate to say it, some of the buildings are probably 80 to 100 years old. And it's a very small site. It's not out actually in an agricultural area,” Pettit said.

Those interested in joining the Fair Board may check the county website for more details.


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  • FirstOtter

    The Thurston County Fair is what fairs used to be, not like what the Washington State Fair in Puyallup has become. That one is too big and consists mostly of salesmen trying to get you to buy hot tubs and vinyl siding.

    It's almost as if the rural, farming part of the fair has been shoved to the edges of the WA State Fair. Whereas the Thurston county fair does have it's salemen, but much of it is still more for people...the quilt shows, the horse shows, the photography exhibits, the's much nicer, quieter, mellower. It's a better fair, and I hope the County understands that the buildings need repair.

    Monday, April 22 Report this