n a special board meeting last week, the Adams County Agricultural Society voted to move forward with a plan to purchase land that would nearly double the existing footprint of the Adams County Fairgrounds. Portions of the land are unusable because of a deep ravine in the property; however, some board members see potential in the additional land.
The last time new land was purchased to expand the fairgrounds was 2012, in an effort led by former longtime Fair Director Ronald Fenton. At the time, the purchase was controversial, but Fenton’s efforts paid off and the Shade Tree Park has been one of the greatest additions to the fair in a generation.
According to multiple board members, the Adams County Agricultural Society will pay Michael Oetzel a total of $145,000 for the purchase. That amounts to just over $2,400 per acre. Public records show that Oetzel paid $137,500 for the property in 2015. Financing will be necessary to fund the acquisition of the property.
During the special meeting, Fair Directors discussed many possibilities of the new land including additional improvements to the fair complex. That could include an expansion of the dirt track complex and additional parking on the grounds. The land nearly connects the Adams County Fairgrounds and State Route 41 North.