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Legislative update: State fair offers a chance to celebrate Kentucky agriculture

By JIMMY HIGDON
14th District State Senator

Friday, Aug. 13, 2021 — Suppose you have ever visited the beautiful Kentucky State Capitol in Frankfort. In that case, you probably remember the rotunda, featuring a statue of President Abraham Lincoln and other famous Kentuckians such as statesmen like Henry Clay, and pioneers like Dr. Ephraim McDowell. If you look above them toward the inside of the Capitol dome, you will see four murals, which unites elements significant to Kentucky’s history.

SEN. JIMMY HIGDON

The murals represent the commonwealth’s Culture, such as music and dance, art, faith, law, and more; Industry, including our world-renowned bourbon industry, the state’s river and stream paddlewheel heritage, Kentuckians work ethic, and architecture; Civitas, or, our shared civilization, progress and strength; and finally, Nature, which naturally represents Kentucky’s rich agricultural history.

Kentucky’s agriculture industry is wide-reaching. It is the foundation from which our strong farming industry produces corn, soybeans, small grains, tobacco, and on which cattle, poultry, and equine graze. These each stock store shelves and freezers of Kentucky small businesses and fill tables of Kentucky families. Farmers in our commonwealth provide goods far beyond the borders of our state. Products created locally can be identified by their “Kentucky Proud” logo.

Our agriculture industry will be on full display starting this coming Thursday, Aug. 19, at the 2021 Kentucky State Fair. The fair is hosted at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville.

The Kentucky State Fair has served as a celebration and display for the agriculture industry for well over a century. The first official Kentucky State Fair was held in 1902 when, according to reporting by WHAS11 News from 2019, more than 75,000 people attended and endured “ill” weather. In 1904, the fair was canceled after it had funds tied up in a lawsuit. Two other cancellations occurred in 1942 and 1943 at the height of World War II. That happened to state fairs nationwide as fuel, tires, and space were being conserved to support the war effort. Seventeen buildings at the fairgrounds were converted to house an ever-expanding requirement for the Tube Turns company for the manufacture of war materials.

As you can see, not only does Kentucky have a rich history of providing Kentucky Proud products and keeping bellies full, the history of our State Fair also includes providing direct assistance to the war efforts and defending freedom and liberty. This year’s state fair is an excellent opportunity to exercise our liberties and support Kentucky agriculture. As your State Senator, I am proud to support Kentucky’s agriculture industry.

The State Fair will host legislative Interim Joint Committee (IJC) meetings, including the IJC on Veterans, Military Affairs, and Public Protection, which I serve on as a member. Meetings will be broadcast live at ket.org/legislature. Meetings date and times are as follows (all times are EDT):

Tuesday, August 24
10 am: IJC on Veterans, Military Affairs, and Public Protection

Wednesday, August 25
1 pm: County Clerk Office Modernization Task Force
3:30 pm: Capitol Project and Bond Oversight Statutory Committee

Thursday, August 26
8 am: IJC on Health, Welfare, and Family Service
10 am: IJC on Agriculture
11 am: IJC on Local Government
1 pm: Joint meeting of the IJCs on Economic Development and Workforce Investment; and Tourism, Small Business, and Information Technology
2:30 pm: IJC on State Government

Following COVID-19’s impact on last year’s State Fair, allowing for participants only and no members of the general public, I encourage you to help make this year’s Kentucky State Fair a glowing success. There is so much to do at the State Fair.

The fair features rides; talent competitions; the World’s Championship Horse Show; animals, such as dairy and beef cattle, goats, mules, and sheep; and of course “AgLand,” which features 4-H programs, National FFA Organization exhibits, and so much more.

Support Kentucky’s farmers and the agriculture industry while enjoying a great time with friends and family. You can find tickets by visiting kystatefair.org/tickets. We are grateful for the hard work and dedication of Kentucky’s farmers. Their talents are on full display this week during the Kentucky State Fair.

In closing, I want to make you aware of recent releases from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) warning consumers about scam attempts. Scams include false promises regarding the eviction moratorium, scam calls and texts claiming to be from Citibank, strangers approaching in parking lots claiming to work for local repair shops, timeshare resale scams, those targeting small businesses, and even asphalt paving scams. There is no limit to what fraudsters will stoop to, so always be cautious and do not trust any email, text, or call you get that gives you pause. You can look at the BBB’s scam tracker and report scams by going to bbb.org/scamtracker.

I hope you and your loved ones can enjoy a fun time at the Kentucky State Fair. Be safe. God Bless.

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