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Fair board decides to evict horses from county fairgrounds

Petting horses at the Lawrence County Fairgrounds could be a thing of the past.

At Thursday's Lawrence County Commission meeting, Jim Robinson said he and others received a letter from the fair board stating that they could no longer board horses at the fairgrounds.

Two months ago, the fair board voted to do away with the horse barns, said Doug Clark, president of the Lawrence County Agricultural Society. They are being destroyed in order to make room for more parking.

Renters were notified of the decision a month ago, Clark added.

"A horse drinks five to eight gallons of water a day and that comes out of a well," Robinson said. "The electric to pump is miniscule, but that's just light bulbs. Horse owners provide barn maintenance."

Even though the rental fees are $30 per month, Clark said he is not afraid of losing revenues.

"There's not many renting and by the time electric, water and upkeep are added in, we're not losing anything," he said.

"Kids have enjoyed coming to the barns to see the horses for years," Robinson said.

"I'm sure kids like horses," Clark replied. "I like them, too, but I've never seen crowds at the barns."

Commissioner Paul Herrell sent a letter to the fair board asking them to reconsider.

However, he said he did understand the fair board's position.

"The state is taking part of their property with this third lane project," he said. "They need the parking."

The county commission has no power over the fair board, Herrell said. It can only make suggestions. Amelia Pridemore/The Ironton Tribune