‘We’re pretty hardy people’: Iron County Fair officials say ‘Tough Enough’ is more than just a theme

File photo of Iron County Fair Parade, Parowan, Utah, Sept. 7, 2020 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

PAROWAN — The Iron County Fair in Parowan promises a variety of family friendly activities throughout Labor Day weekend, from Thursday through Monday.

Volunteers clean mud out of gutters in Cross Hollow area, Cedar City, Utah, July 27, 2021 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

Fair manager Joyce Evans told Cedar City News this year’s chosen theme – “Tough Enough” – refers to the grit and resilience shown by Iron County residents over the past couple years.

“We’ve gone through kind of a hard year, and we were tough enough to survive,” Evans said, referring to challenges such as the coronavirus pandemic, drought and recent flooding. “It’s not just one thing. It’s just that we’re pretty hardy people, and we’re tough enough to get through it.”

The Iron County Fairgrounds will be bustling with activities over the weekend, including three nights of PRCA rodeo competitions and a wide variety of exhibits, games and contests. 

A handful of fair-related activities have already taken place. At the Miss Iron County pageant at Canyon View High School on Aug. 14, Andelin Mbaki was named the new queen for the upcoming year, while Tanley McCurdy was named winner of the outstanding teen competition

The following weekend, there was a mud bog event and an ATV/UTV excursion, and Saturday featured a horseback trail ride and the demolition derby.

This week, exhibits will be entered on Tuesday and Wednesday, and the fair will officially kick off at 4 p.m. Thursday with the opening of the carnival rides. The carnival will subsequently open at 4 p.m. on Friday and Sunday and 11 a.m. on both Saturday and Labor Day on Monday. Various vendors and concessions will be available throughout the weekend.

Utah actor Kirby Heyborne, known for his roles in movies centered around the LDS church culture, will be the featured performer for Sunday evening’s program, which starts at 7 p.m. and is free to the public. The event will be held in the main midway tent, with Parowan High School auditorium serving as the backup location in case of inclement weather.

Iron County Fair Parade, Parowan, Utah, Sept. 7, 2020 | File photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News / Cedar City News

Among the many popular events scheduled during the fair are a junior rodeo for kids, an antique tractor pull, a line dancing competition, a post-rodeo dance, a fish grab, mechanical bull riding, aerial circus performers, a talent show, a beautiful baby contest and a horseshoe tournament.

As far as spectators to some of these events are concerned, Evans said 2021 will mark the last hurrah for the wooden grandstands at the rodeo grounds. Built as a Civilian Conservation Corps project during the 1930s, Evans said they’re scheduled to be torn down and replaced with new aluminum bleachers shortly after this year’s fair ends.

Among the new activities this year are a multiday disc golf tournament and a hay competition. Additionally, the Retro Fitness stage will spotlight a variety of dance groups, entertainment acts, contests and other special events. The midway tent will host various musical group entertainment.

The fair’s final day will kick off Monday with its traditional community parade up Main Street in Parowan, with 86-year-old Donna Beth Wilde Cooley serving as grand marshal. Also on Monday are a 5K run/walk race and a car show at the nearby Lions Park.

For more information, visit the fair’s official website. An electronic copy of the 48-page booklet can be downloaded by clicking here.

Event details

  • What: 2021 Iron County Fair.
  • When: Sept. 2-6. Click here for specific times.
  • Where: Iron County Fairgrounds, Clinic Way, Parowan. 
  • Admission: For advance ticket information, click here. To purchase rodeo tickets or carnival passes, click here.
  • Additional information: Call 435-477-8380 or visit the fair’s website.

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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