Bonneville County Fair Grounds left their old five acre property for a new 50 acre location that consists of four buildings. The projected was estimated to take four years and the county completed it in two, rushing to get it ready for this years’ Bonneville County Fair.
Along with housing an extension of The University of Idaho, the office for the 4-H program will also reside on the grounds and use the facilities for youth development, teaching kids a variety of skills including: gardening, horticulture, and family and consumer sciences.
“There’s no doubt in my mind that this facility, The Melaleuca 4-H Event Center and the entire Bonneville county fair grounds will make a positive impact on our community for generations to come,” said Bonneville County Commissioner, Bryon Reed.
The main hub of the fair grounds is the Melaleuca 4-H event center that will host all the livestock shows throughout the week of the fair, the public action of the animals, and will be used for other multiple purposes throughout the year.
“Kids learn to work at a young age and learn responsibility, they learn character and learn how to train an animal, they take a one thousand pound steer and tame him from being wild out to where they’re gentle and tamed and all of that is a learning program for kids that is unbelievable, you just can’t learn it from an ipad,” said founder of Melaleuca, Frank Vandersloot. Vandersloot participated in 4-H in during his youth years and says it’s great to be able to give back to a program that taught him so much.
The new and improved fairgrounds were funded by over a hundred donors, including the County and Melaluca.
The previous county fair grounds were sold to the city of Idaho Falls who plans to use them for an expanded Zoo area.
The location of the new Bonneville County Fair Grounds opens the door for exciting opportunities.
“Our close proximity to Sandy Downs and all that they have going there gives us the opportunity to work in tandem with the city of Idaho Falls to be able to provide a lot of additional opportunities to the community,” said Reed.
Tomorrow the county will host a ribbon cutting ceremony for the new fair grounds at 7pm.