By Argen Duncan: PNT senior writer
This year’s Dairy Fest is featuring a No. 1-hit country singer and, for the first time, a mechanical-bull, on top of cheeseburgers, dairy foods, educational booths and games.
And did anyone mention all that costs only $1 per person?
The fourth annual Dairy Fest, complete with a Sammy Kershaw country concert, starts 5 p.m. Saturday at the Curry County Special Events Center.
The $1 entrance fee pays for all Dairy Fest food and activities except tickets for a Food Bank of Eastern New Mexico raffle of a child-sized electric tractor and trailer filled with food.
“Since 1939, June has been designated National Dairy Month, and Dairy Fest is our way of saying thank you to the communities for their support,” said organizer Michelle Heavyside, president of United Dairy Women.
About 100 local businesses sponsor the event, she said. Admission fees go to the Food Bank of Eastern New Mexico.
Organizer Robert Hagevoort, New Mexico State University Extension dairy specialist, said planners have enough cheeseburgers, yogurt, milk, ice cream sandwiches and soda floats for 5,000 people.
Last year, he said, 6,000 people came and 3,000 stayed despite a rainstorm.
“We’re very glad to have the event center,” Hagevoort said.
Not only do organizers have no worries about weather — the events center is enclosed — but they also don’t have to set up and clean up the day of the event.
Heavyside said entrances are stroller and handicap accessible.
As for the interactive educational booths, Hagevoort said they would tell the story of dairy from “grass to glass.”
Heavyside said the booths target children and adults, and have activities such as making butter and trying out equipment Clovis Community College uses to train students in milk processing.
For games, children can ride the “Moo Coo Coo” and learn to rope. Milk mustache photos, a dunk booth and a cow-patty toss are among other options.
And no, the cow patties aren’t real.
“We won’t make it nasty,” Hagevoort said.
The food, games and booths come before the concert.
Local musicians the Fun Brothers Band, Andy Mason and Coby Carter, a junior high student, are set to open for Kershaw.
Louisiana native Kershaw’s songs include “Meant to Be,” “Queen of My Double Wide Trailer,” “Don’t Go Near the Water” and “She Don’t Know She’s Beautiful.”
Between the opening act and Kershaw, the audience can watch a mechanical-bull riding contest with prizes of a grill, an ice chest, grilling accessories and steaks.
What: Dairy Fest
When: Food, booths and games 5-7 p.m., Sammy Kershaw concert 7:30-9:30 p.m. Saturday
Where: Curry County Event Center at the Curry County Fairgrounds
Price: $1 for food, Sammy Kershaw concert and other activities
Tickets: At the door; at The Re-Ink Spot at 2901 N. Prince St. in Clovis; or free with the purchase of a Happy Meal at McDonald’s in Clovis and Portales.