Halloween is quickly approaching which means this year’s Oktoberfest Harvest Celebration is just around the corner. Fun for any age, this year we’re introducing some new events, including a lawn mower race! Aimed at adults, the lawnmower race will kick off at 4 p.m. and only costs $5 to enter. If you think you’ve got what it takes, call the fair office and sign up today. Another new activity this year is the highly anticipated Dodge Ball match between the Comets and the Mules. Both schools are recruiting players but I’m also opening the competition to alumni as well. If you’re interested in playing sign up today. Start pumping those biceps for the return of the Pumpkin shot put contest. Open to all ages, this year’s competition will focus solely on distance and will be split between children and adults. Kicking off at 1pm, bring down the whole family and see who will be named the 2009 Pumpkin Shot Put winner. Scheduled for October 31 from 12 - 6 p.m., the 2009 Oktoberfest Harvest Celebration is one event you can’t afford to miss. If you’d like more information or would like to volunteer, please contact the fair office today. This week marks the re-opening of the Helping Hand food bank. Now located within the T Building at the fairgrounds, Mary Dasher and her volunteers have been working flat out to ensure each Tuesday families from the Cathlamet area can collect groceries to feed their families. Distributing over 8,500 pounds of food each month, this organization is important to our community which is why the fair board and I will continue to lend our support. As November approaches all county heads gear up for the annual budget review. I am hopeful the commissioners will be able to find resources to support the fair, as we need to build on the momentum of the new arena. For the first time in years the fairgrounds are an ideal venue for various functions and activities. If we can work together to help the fairgrounds stand on its own, the future looks very bright. It’s been a long and at times painful journey but I am hopeful the remaining construction of the new arena will be completed in the next two weeks. Upon completion the arena will be open for use by the public. If you’d like to purchase a key to the Horse Gate to access the new riding arena, please contact the fair office. The key costs $50 and is good for one year. Would you like to become involved with the planning of our 102nd fair next summer? The fair board is looking for new volunteers and potential members to join one of the new fair committees. Whether it’s entertainment, the princess program or the fair book, this is your chance to help make a difference and let your voice be heard. The Wahkiakum County Fair board meets every month on the second Wednesday at 7 p.m. in the 3rd floor meeting room of the courthouse. The next fair board meeting will take place on November 11. Please note that the public is always welcome to attend. In an effort to cut costs and stay within our budget the fair office will now be open by appointment only. If you need to gain access to the fairgrounds please contact the fair office or leave a message on my cell phone 360-355-7743.