Lamprey display among many new exhibits at fair’s Community Center

July 31, 2014

fair_logo_MCPMCP’s coverage of the 78th Western Michigan Fair is brought to you through the generous support of FloraCraft of Ludington, www.FloraCraft.com and Squires Family Chiropractic, 414 E. U.S. 10, Scottville; 231-757-3356; www.drlewissquires.com.

The fair will be held Tuesday, Aug. 5 through Saturday, Aug. 9 at the Mason County Fairgrounds on U.S. 10 east of Ludington. 

By Allison Scarbrough. Contributing Editor.

LUDINGTON — A US Fish and Wildlife Services sea lamprey exhibit highlights a dozen new Western Michigan Fair exhibits in the Community Center.

Other new booths include the Mason County Garden Club offering garden gloves and children’s activities; the Mason County Eastern Preschool Program with a photo booth and prizes; Kaska Sugar Bush of Shelby showcasing its delicious maple syrup products and pizza; Jubliee Years, Inc. of Ludington with nutritional supplements; the Mason County Barn Quilt – Agri Tourism Trail, displaying a quilt and information about the organizations; Freedom Martial Arts of Ludington offering exciting demonstrations; Ludington Holistic Health providing foot massages; Clean Gutters of Michigan; 51st Circuit Court Judge candidate Craig Cooper; and America’s Best Choice Window Company of Grand Rapids. A new outside vendor is GDS Home Heating, which will showcase heating units that burn corn.

While devastating to fish in the Great Lakes, lampreys do not harm people, explained Katie Steiger-Meister of the US Fish and Wildlife Services. “The US Fish and Wildlife Service, together with our partners from the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, attends a variety of boating, fishing and outdoor shows each year, educating the public on the operations and benefits of the Sea Lamprey Control Program. The main tool used during these outreach events is a large graphic display with a computer interface and an aquarium that houses live adult sea lampreys. Attendees are commonly drawn to the exhibit to observe the invasive sea lampreys clinging to the aquarium with their circular mouth filled with razor sharp teeth and a rasping tongue. This provides our staff with a prime opportunity to educate the public about the destructive nature of the sea lamprey, the value of Great Lakes fisheries and how the international control program is implemented.”

Several favorite exhibits return to the Community Center as well, including the the Mason-Lake Conservation District; the Mason County Historical Society; Farm Bureau of Mason County; Country Acres Pools and Spas of Hart; Pampered Chef; SyncWave; Tupperware; and Cox’s Sales & Service of Scottville.

So far, there are a total of 56 inside vendors and 10 outside vendors, said West Michigan Fair Association Secretary Barb Robidoux who chairs the exhibitors committee. “The community center is full,” Robidoux said. However, more are welcome to sign up as outside vendors or on Vendors’ Row, but they must do so by Wednesday, July 30. No flea market items are allowed. “They are business exhibits,” she said. “These are brand-new items for sale.”

As of early this week, eight vendors were slated to participate in Vendors’ Row, which is located underneath the grandstand. New additions to Vendors’ Row is “That Grandma Still Sews” by Faye Johnson of New Era and  “Bracelets by Heather,” a Ludington artist. The Michigan Army National Guard will also have a display in Vendors’ Row. Contact Robidoux at 231-462-3284 if you would like your business or organization to participate.

All fair information and stories can be accessed in the menu underneath the Mason County Press masthead at www.MasonCountyPress.com. Also, for more information, visit the fair’s Facebook page: Facebook.com/masoncountyfairgrounds or website: masoncountyfairgrounds.com

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