ESCANABA — The Upper Peninsula State opened Monday night and continues through Sunday. U.P. Fair Board President Phyliss French of McMillan in Luce County say they have been working all year to present a quality fair.
“All of the counties working together has made a tremendous difference in the quality of the fair. I want to see that continue and I want to see that continue to grow,” French said.
Fair Board member Steve Palosaari of Chassell says like traditional state fairs, the U.P. State Fair attracts the agricultural community from each of the 15 counties in the U.P.
“Traditionally a state fair represents all of the different counties. the best of each county came to the state fair to compete against each other. There’s some of that competition going on today,” he said.
Horse competitions started Monday, the competition at the beef barn was held Tuesday morning. French is a volunteer at the beef barn and is excited about the entries this year.
“We checked in 77 steers. They range from 1,600 lbs. down to 1,025 lbs. so there is a big variety, really nice looking steers. It’s going to be a great show,” said French.
The grand champion is Camy Miller of downstate Clare. The Reserve Champion is Daniel Scales of Chippewa County.
Animal competitions continue throughout the week. The annual livestock auction will be Saturday morning.
This is the second year that the American Highland Cattle Association is holding a points show at the U.P. State Fair. That’s the hairy cows that get a lot of attention from fairgoers.
Palosaari said the competition is bringing competitors in from all over the country.
“There are only 16 shows in the United States. The U.P. State Fair is hosting one of them so we have 51 animals registered to come in all the way from Nebraska, Minnesota, Wisconsin and quite a few from lower Michigan,” Palosaari said.
The competitions start Friday at 10 a.m.
Hanson, Granger Smith and Pop Evil headline the grandstands. There are new rides, midway entertainment and of course food, games and displays.
The fair ends Sunday night with fireworks.