(Posted Feb. 20, 2020)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
Ride and game options at last year’s Madison County Fair were slim. That won’t be the case this year.
At the Ohio Fair Managers Association convention in January, the fair board signed a contract with a new ride company, Chicketti Family Amusements out of Enon, Ohio, located 30 miles west of London.
“We will have a rejuvenated midway this year,” said Dave Monnin, fair board member. “Chicketti will have approximately 15 rides on the grounds, plus games.”
Fair board members who attended the fair managers convention talked to a number of ride companies before settling on the Enon outfit.
“We liked them because they are family-owned and close by, and they want to grow with us,” Monnin said.
Colton Chicketti is the third generation of his family to work in the carnival industry. He has been managing shows since he was 15 years old. Last year, he and his wife, Emilee, founded Chicketti Family Amusements. The Bucyrus Bratwurst Festival and the South Vienna Corn Festival were among the events for which they provided rides and games last year. In addition to the Madison County Fair, events on their 2020 schedule include the Crawford County Fair and the Picktown Palooza in Pickerington.
Chicketti’s ride offerings include a variety of options for all ages, from a 50-foot gondola-style Ferris wheel, a giant Fun Slide and a swirling disc Casino ride that seats up to 60 people to a separate Inflate Zone designed just for young children.
Colton said Madison County fairgoers can expect a clean, professional, and brightly colored midway experience.
“We’re looking to knock it out of the park for you guys,” he said.
This year’s Madison County Fair is Sunday, July 12 through Saturday, July 18. In addition to the ride company, the fair board has booked most of the entertainment for the week.
As for grandstand events, Broken Horn Rodeo is back for its second year. The outfit out of Ripley, Ohio, puts on a full rodeo featuring seven events–saddle bronc riding, bareback horse riding, steer wrestling, tie-down calf roping, barrel racing, team roping and bull riding. The event proved to be a big attraction last year.
“We had a wonderful turnout,” said Amy Nichols, fair board member.
As was the case last year, the rodeo includes stick horse races for any child who wants to participate. Age categories are 5 years old and younger and 6-9 years old. Nichols is looking for sponsors for two bicycles to give away as prizes. Anyone interested in helping out can contact her at (740) 837-0134.
The rodeo will take place on Wednesday of fair week. Other tried and true crowd pleasers are back in the lineup, as well: drag racing on Sunday, motocross races on Thursday, tractor pulls on Friday, and the demolition derby on Saturday.
Grandstand entertainment for Monday and Tuesday is still in the works, Monnin said.
Dino-ROAR, an educational show that features dinosaur hand puppets, body suits, and animatronics, returns for a second year to the covered pavilion, located in the center of the fairgrounds (next to the former rabbit and small animal barn).
Other acts planned at the pavilion include Mr. Puppet, who performed at this year’s 4-H Rally Night, Mike Bishop, a hypnotist and comedian who has performed at the fair in years past, and a magician.