Day in and day out, thousands of helping hands make the fair function at its best, but some of them are unseen by most fair-goers.
There’s people up and at it bright and early, working hard to have the fair as good as new before it opens.
“It’s not too bad when we come in the mornings,” says Bryan Guillory, a clean up volunteer.
What you don’t see early on the fairgrounds is litter. That’s because people like Guillory.
“We’re doing clean up, picking up trash, and making it look good.”
Guillory and the rest of his squadron from Minot Air Force Base got to the fairgrounds just before the sun came up.
They stick around until noon time, or until they feel they’ve got the grounds as clean as possible.
“It’s mainly just trash, stuff that’s blown away. We cleaned up the beer gardens and found some tickets and stuff over there,” Guillory adds.
The volunteers who pick up trash here at the fair are responsible for every inch of the fairgrounds. That includes this entire parking lot, which is where they stay they spend most of their time.
“The parking lots usually the worst, and the food court. A lot of food and stuff is just left on the ground.”
Beyond clean up, there are other helping hands at the fair that you might not see, but their work doesn’t go unnoticed.
“Usually for 4-H or FFA, there’s something different every day that we have to set up for,” says Dar Brown, an overnight grounds crew member.
Brown said there are at least 10 members of the grounds crew on site at a time.For him, he’s at the fair before the sun sets and all through the night until after it rises.
“We do barn change overs, reset some of the tents, stuff like that.”
That’s how this poultry barn from the first half of the fair transformed into a dairy barn for the second half.
The grounds crew manager, Craig Rudland, said the biggest task for the crew is to make sure all of the buildings and event tents are set up and safe for everyone each day.