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Fairgrounds Name May Change

POLK COUNTY -- A name change may be in store for the Polk County Fair complex.

POLK COUNTY -- A name change may be in store for the Polk County Fair complex.

The Polk County Fair Board is scheduled to discuss and possibly decide upon a name change to "Polk County Fair and Events Center" at its Thursday, May 19, meeting.

The change would better reflect the function the fairgrounds serves, Fair Manager Tina Andersen said.

"Too many people think we are just a four-day fair," she said. "That is just one of the many things we do here."

The facility is host to more than 600 events each year, which attract 150,000 to 200,000 people to the fairgrounds annually, Andersen said.

Andersen said state and county support for the fair is dwindling, so adding the title "Events Center" may help the fair generate more revenue to cover its expenses.

"It's a marketing tool," Andersen said. "That way, when people are looking for a location to hold an event, they can keep us in mind."

Andersen said the annual Polk County Fair is the best known event at the fairgrounds, but it isn't a revenue generator. Andersen said she is happy to have it break even.

Proceeds from renting the facility for other events throughout the year help the fair stay in business -- which means the fairgrounds is always busy.

"We don't have anything sitting empty," Andersen said. "Without all the events, we wouldn't be open."

She said the board has been considering the change for about a year, but wanted to seek input from the public before making a decision.

"They really want to hear what people think," Andersen said. "It's a big deal to change the name."

People can comment on the name change until Friday, May 13.

Submit comments to the Fair Manager at Andersen.tina@co.polk.or.us or by calling 503-623-3048 during regular business hours.

The Polk County Fair Board meets on Thursday, May 19, at 10 a.m. in Meeting Room 2 at the Polk County Fairgrounds, 520 S. Pacific Highway (99W), Rickreall.

What's Your Opinion?

* The Polk County Fair Board is considering changing the name of the fairgrounds complex from "Polk County Fair" to "Polk County Fair and Events Center." Share your comments about the proposed change by Friday, May 13, by contacting Tina Andersen, fair manager, at 503-623-3048 or sending an e-mail to Andersen.tina@co.polk.or.us.

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