Power outage delays activities at West Virginia Interstate Fair

Photo by Chad Adkins The power outage didn’t hinder the power output at the mud bog competition on Thursday at the West Virginia Interstate Fair and Exposition.

MINERAL WELLS — An almost three-hour power outage caused significant delays to events at the West Virginia Interstate Fair and Exposition on Thursday.

Jeff McElfresh, president of the 4-H Livestock Chairs, said the power outage kept fans from operating in the Beef Barn, forcing the livestock outside to try to keep cool. The move caused an hour and a half delay to the start of the Junior Beef Showmanship competition, but McElfresh said hardships like the delay along with raising a competition caliber cow, showed the youth participating what life is all about.

“It teaches these kids lifelong lessons and responsibilities,” he said. “It keeps them out of a lot of trouble, too.”

Also delayed, the mud bog competition began an hour later than the scheduled 7 p.m. start time. Approximately 100 people sat in temperatures with a heat index over 100 degrees, patiently waiting for the start of the competition.

“It’s a heck of a day to get a power outage,” said David Stevens, 52, of Parkersburg.

Photo by Chad Adkins After an hour and a half delay due to a power outage, the Junior Beef Showmanship competition still brought out the finest animals on Thursday at the West Virginia Interstate Fair and Exposition.

The power outage also affected food vendors at the fair. Melting ice cream and non operational sno-cone machines weren’t able to keep visitors to the fairgrounds on Thursday cool either. The rides on the midway weren’t affected by the outage as they run on their own generators.

The main building at the fairgrounds is the only structure that is climate controlled, and its air conditioning was shut down during the outage. With the National Weather Service in Charleston issuing an excessive heat warning from noon on Friday to 8 p.m. on Saturday, another power outage would kill the only cooling station at the fair.

Not all the events were delayed at the West Virginia Interstate Fair and Exposition on Thursday, though. The cutest baby and diaper derby went on without a hitch.

Kaleee Posey brought her 10-month-old daughter Milliana to the cutest baby contest and won in her division. Milliana was also entered into the diaper derby, where toddlers are timed on how fast they could cross a mat by any means possible. Milliana failed to win the racing event. Kaylee said she thought her daughter was a sure bet before the competition, though.

“She started walking at nine months,” she said. “Now she runs everywhere.”

Photo by Chad Adkins Even though she didn’t win this race in the diaper derby, Milliana Posey still won cutest baby in her class at the West Virginia Interstate Fair and Exposition on Thursday.

The third day of the West Virginia Interstate Fair and Exposition ended with Rick K and the Allnighters on the main stage.

Today’s highlights include the hay bale and skillet toss at 5:30 p.m., mud bog and ATV races at 7 p.m. and the Eagles tribute band Out of Eden at 8:30 p.m. on the main stage.

Chad Adkins can be reached at cadkins@newsandsentinel.com.