Fairgoers enjoy good weather

Black diesel smoke shoots up from a Massey Ferguson 1155 tractor driven by Darrell Dunlap of Fulton Wednesday night at the Callaway County Fair. Dunlap competed in the 12,500-pound class of Missouri Tractor Pullers competition. His 294 feet, 10-inch effort captured fourth place in his class.

Black diesel smoke shoots up from a Massey Ferguson 1155 tractor driven by Darrell Dunlap of Fulton Wednesday night at the Callaway County Fair. Dunlap competed in the 12,500-pound class of Missouri Tractor Pullers competition. His 294 feet, 10-inch effort captured fourth place in his class. Photo by Don Norfleet.

Pleasant temperatures under an overcast sky greeted visitors to the Kingdom of Callaway County Fair Wednesday evening.

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Members of the Mulekicker Cloggers, a Callaway County group that performs at fairs and other events around Missouri, cavort around the stage Wednesday night at the Callaway County Fair.

This year, fair organizers decided to return to the event’s roots and offer more local participation events with less emphasis on glitzy — and expensive — stage shows and other attractions.

The fair opened Monday and continues through Saturday.

Many fairgoers liked the new format but a few said the crowds seemed smaller than normal, although grandstand events still attracted enthusiastic crowds.

Bethany Middaugh of Fulton said she was having fun and loved the lemonade.

Courtney Wilson of Fulton said she is looking forward to the demolition derby on Friday night.

“I enjoy watching the tractor pull competition,” said Stephanie Brewer of Fulton.

Bill Howser of Fulton brought his wife and two children to the event.

“The kids are enjoying the carnival rides. Fairs are a lot of fun for them,” Howser said.

The main attraction Wednesday night was the tractor pulling competition.

Darrell Dunlap of Fulton finished fourth in the 12,500-pound class with his big 1155 Massey Ferguson tractor that belched huge clouds of diesel smoke as it strained to the end of its run. Dunlap’s tractor pulled the heavy sliding sled 294 feet, 10 inches.

On the other side of the arena, garden tractors from the Garden Tractor Pullers of Mid-Missouri Association competed in various classes.

In another arena, draft horses pulled a sled in competition.

Participants in the tractor pull event compete regularly around Missouri as members of the Missouri Farm Pullers.

As a safety measure, tip over bars are mandatory. Radial tires are allowed in all classes but no cut tires are permitted.

Turbochargers are allowed in all tractor classes. However, no water/alcohol injection, propane injection or nitrous are permitted.

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