South Plains Fair; then and now - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

South Plains Fair; then and now

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Source: Centennial Lubbock Source: Centennial Lubbock

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - It has been 96 years since the first South Plains Fair, but it hasn't always been fun and games.

Before the roller coasters, before the fried foods, it was just a community gathering.

The first fair started in 1914 as a Chamber of Commerce event for farmers and ranchers to get together and talk about their crops and livestock. "Years ago all the farmers and ranchers from the neighboring counties and this part of Texas used to bring their livestock to exhibit," said Burk Lattimore, livestock show participant. "It was kind of the talk of the town as to who won the show."

In 1921 the first livestock show came to the fair. "Just grew out of competition of livestock among friends," said Herb Higgs, South Plains Fair general manager. "They came to town, brought a few animals. You know, the my pigs better than your pig kind of thing."

Now, nearly a century later, they're still coming together from all over West Texas to do just that. "This is Queen Elizabeth," said ten year old Shea Lynn Suttles about her show heifer. "She is a rotten little one, but she's pretty good."

The South Plains Fair has also been known as the "Granddaddy of West Texas Fairs". It ranks second only behind the Dallas State Fair in attendance and continuous history.

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