Manatee County Fair closed Sunday after a good run, official says

MANATEE -- The Manatee County Fair ended Sunday evening after what an official said was a good run.

"This is what they call 'Chamber of Commerce weather,'" said Daniel West, general manager of the Manatee River Fair Association Inc., the nonprofit organization that puts on the fair.

He meant the weather was something chamber types could brag about, and it was certainly perfect -- sunny, mild and domed with a clear, blazing blue sky.

West said attendance figures were not immediately available.

Among the fair favorites this year were "The Tricky Dog Show," which featured, yes, dogs doing various funny things, along with the always popular Midway rides and various livestock events, he said.

The fair's last livestock event was a horse show Sunday.

"The food is wonderful," said Monique King, 22, purchasing manager from Sarasota, who was eating fried green tomatoes at a picnic table along the Midway.

Her companion, Javoris Prince, 27, a student from Sarasota, was dining al fresco on sausages.

King said she was surprised she did not have to wait to enjoy a ride. "There was no line," she said.

Cindy Folmsbee, 34, a nurse from North Port, was accompanied by her husband and children, plus a relative.

"It's all really nice," she said. "They're loving it."

Horse Show winners

Grand Champion Mare: Chaise Arpke showing Sahara

Grand Champion Gelding: Amanda Neal showing Hot Chocolate Skip

Junior Showmanship: Arpke showing Sahara

Senior Showmanship: Neal showing Hot Chocolate Skip

Junior Horseman Award: Arpke on Sahara

Senior Horseman Award: Jordan Olson on Dun in Lace