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Sand and Sage Beer Garden Halfway Home

Courthouse-and-Windmill

There should be another beer garden for this year’s Sand and Sage Fair. Fair board members met with the Prowers County Commissioners on April 18th to request permission for an expanded beer garden during the August event.  The process was a lot easier this year than the initial request which met with some resistance.  The fact that there was no negative outcome from the ice-breaker event last year helped pave the way for this year’s approval.  The Fair board still needs the approval of the Lamar City Council for a special events permit, and according to Fair Board President, Mark Carrigan, no date for that meeting has been set.

Carrigan said this year’s garden will be expanded by size and duration. “We intend to add the size of the garden by 50 feet to the north, but still allow space between the garden and the bleachers at the arena,” he explained.  He added that the garden will be open for another day, but the hours of operation will change.  “This year, we’ll open at 5pm instead of 3pm like we did last year, but we’ll stay open an hour later and shut down at midnight,” he said.  Carrigan explained that the rodeo contestants and people working the event wouldn’t finish their closing chores until almost closing time, so they’ll stay open for an additional hour so this group can have a little more time.  Carrigan said there’s also a possibility this year’s fair will feature a jumbo-tron during the concert, so people in the beer garden will be able to observe the performance instead of just listening to it from a distance.

The beer garden will be as tightly regulated this year as it was for the initial venture. “About 90% of our Fair Board members are TIPS certified, and we intend to have a trouble-free event,” Carrigan stated, adding, “We made from $10,000 to $12,000 on the garden, where we usually have a loss for the fair.  They really don’t make that much money and we were able to put some back and distributed a portion of those funds to groups in the community like SDS,” he explained. The beer garden is expected to be opened the first Friday and Saturday of the event, and open again the following Thursday through Saturday.

By Russ Baldwin

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