PASO ROBLES (CA) – Rebounding from a 2020 which saw the California Mid-State Fair completely cancelled due to Covid-19, the 2021 Fair returned for 12 full days, Jul 21 – Aug 1. Following all current safety protocols from the State and County, the Fair featured all the usual attractions: 4-H and FFA Exhibitors, Carnival rides, Exhibits, Food, Shopping and Live Music – albeit in a ‘modified’ fashion. The Fair was technically celebrating its 75th anniversary.
Interim CEO Colleen Bojorquez said, “What we saw this year was the absolute best in our community. From the attendance numbers to the money raised in support of our Livestock exhibitors, I am literally speechless. ‘Thrilled’ and ‘grateful’ would be the two emotions I’m feeling right now at the community support of the Fair.”
Revenue from the 2021 livestock auctions raised $2,302,120 on 515 animals (with Add-Ons, official). Of that, $409,750 came from the Replacement Heifer Sale and $1,892,370 came from the Junior Livestock Auction.
BUD LIGHT SELTZER CONCERT SERIES
Concerts in the Chumash Main Grandstand needed to be modified due to Covid-19, but still managed to draw over 15,000 paid attendees, with over 5,000 guests coming to the Little Big Town concert on July 30. The total number of concerts was also modified due to Covid-19. Other artists appearing in 2021 included Dwight Yoakam, Big & Rich, Uncle Kracker, Pancho Barraza and Jason Derulo.
INDUSTRIAL ARTS AUCTION
This year’s auction brought in a stunning $102,000 – on 25 projects – thanks to generous support from the community. Paso Robles High School’s 15 BBQ projects raised $35,000 and proceeds were donated to the James W. Brabeck Foundation (JWBYLF) to support the Junior Livestock Auction. Over $750,000 has been brought in since the auction began over 20 years ago.
Total overall attendance topped 220,000 (unofficial). While official ticket counts will take several weeks to calculate, the Fair wishes to sincerely thank all those who participated in, and/or attended the 2021 Fair!
Helm and Sons Amusements, Inc. of Colton, California generated over $1,300,000 in total revenue, a slight increase from 2019.
The Fair received generous support once again from businesses and individuals in the form of corporate sponsorships. Seventy total sponsors gave over $800,000 in cash and in-kind donations.
CENTRAL COAST WINE COMPETITION
The Central Coast Wine Competition named Pear Valley Vineyards as the 2021 Winery of the Year. The Paso Robles winery had 20 entries with four best of class awards, four double golds and five golds. This is the first Winery of the Year honor for Pear Valley. Other winners:
Best of Show/Best of Red – Carol Shelton Wines, Santa Rosa, 2019 Coquille Rogue
Best Dessert – Halter Ranch, Paso Robles, 2019 Vin De Paille
Best Sparkling – Robert Hall, Paso Robles, 2019 Cavern Select Sparkling Grenache Blanc
Best Rose – Vina Robles Vineyards and Winery, Paso Robles, 2020 Rosé Huerhuero Vineyard
Best White – Bushong Vintage Company, Paso Robles, 2020 Spanish Castle Queen
This year’s competition included 94 wineries and 508 wines entered. The competition features 62 classes based on grape varieties and vintages, where the “Best of “wines are selected for their varietal typicity, quality and character. The blind-tasting event, held June 15 – 17 at the Paso Robles Event Center, is the largest wine competition on California’s Central Coast, which encompasses ten counties stretching from Alameda to Ventura.
CENTRAL COAST VINEGAR COMPETITION
The Central Coast Vinegar Competition featured four brands with 11 total entries in 11 classes based on varieties. Winners:
Best of Show/Best of Class Barrel Aged – Kismet Refining Company, Escondido, Black Garlic Balsamic
Best of Class Flavored – Kismet Refining Company, Escondido, Hibiscus
Best of Class Infused – Broken Clock Vinegar Works, Solvang, Chardonnay and Lavender
Best of Class Other Fruit – Aris Vinegar, Paso Robles, Pomegranate
CENTRAL COAST SPIRITS COMPETITION
The Central Coast Spirits Competition featured 60 total classes with 13 companies and 35 total entries. Winners:
Best of Show/Best of Class Whiskey – Stark Spirits, Pasadena, Peated Single Malt
Best of Class Amaro – Pendray’s Distillery, Templeton, Amaro
Best of Class Gin – Tin City Distillery, Paso Robles, Classic Gin
Best of Class Rye – Krobar Craft Distillery, Paso Robles, 100% Rye
Best of Class Vodka – Azeo, Paso Robles, Vodka
SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTY WINE INDUSTRY AWARDS
Winemaker of the Year – Jordan Fiorentini, Epoch Estate Wines
Winegrape Grower of the Year – Lucas Pope, Coastal Vineyard Services
Wine Industry Person of the Year – Lorraine Alban, J&L Wines
Agriculturalist of the Year – Doug Filipponi
Cattlewoman of the Year – Tracy Nicholson
Cattleman of the Year – Randy Baxley
COUNTRY RODEO FINALS WINNERS
The Country Rodeo Finals All-Around Cowboy was Joe Roth. The All-Around Cowboy was Will Centoni. The All-Around Cowgirls were Josie Pereira and Emerson Pereira. The Timed Event Cowboy was Dugan Kelly. Other winners:
CODY MORA (San Miguel), CLAY AVILA (San Ardo), JOE ROTH (Lockwood)
LISA BUSICK (Atascadero)
Ranch Rope & Brand
FRANCISCO CRUZ, FRANKY MARTINEZ (Shandon), COLTER NEGRANTI (Shandon), DANNY LESLIE (San Miguel)
Mixed Ribbon Roping
JOSIE PEREIRA (San Luis Obispo), WILL CENTONI (San Luis Obispo)
ADAM TEIXEIRA (Nipomo), TANNER PATINO
PETER RINCON, EDGAR MACHADO (Avenal)
Ladies Breakaway Roping
SUTTON MANG (Lompoc)
LEGACY PROJECT 2021
The James W. Brabeck Youth Legacy (JWBYLF) Fund selected Donielle Harpster of the Cerro Alto 4-H Club as their 2021 scholarship recipient. She is an experienced public speaker and youth leader who has spent the past thirteen years as an active participant in her local 4-H program. She will receive up to a $20,000 scholarship towards her college tuition and fees. Harpster is a Mission College Preparatory senior and will be using the scholarship to support her education to become a large animal veterinarian or pediatric dentist.
MISS CALIFORNIA MID-STATE FAIR 2021
This year’s Queen was 21-year-old Yvette Florentino of Arroyo Grande. Yvette is attending Cuesta College and her hobbies and interests include painting and horseback riding. She’s part of Woods Humane Society, Portuguese Holy Spirit Society (board member), a regular contributor to Vitalant, and a support assistant for Rise. 18-year-old Cassidie Banish of San Miguel was the 1st Runner Up, 23-year-old Megan Moffatt of Paso Robles was 2nd Runner Up, and 20-year-old Haley Fredrick of Paso Robles was named Miss Congeniality.
The 2022 California Mid-State Fair runs July 20-31, 2022