The PA Department of Agriculture Friend of the Fair Program (previously the Outstanding Fair Ambassador Program) recognizes and acknowledges the hard work and dedication put forth by fair volunteers. Friend of the Fair Award recipients are individuals (or groups) who have demonstrated outstanding leadership, volunteerism and dedication, resulting in a significant contribution to the success of the local fair.
2019 Friend of the Fair – Jim and Anita Chase
Jim and Anita are high school sweethearts, married in 1965. They have been married 54 years. Jim has always had a passion for agriculture and farming equipment and is often the first man people in this area call for help with equipment issues. He is known for his lively stories, big laugh, and love for giving Anita her grey hairs. Anita, lovingly known as “Grandma Nita”, you can find spending her days in the kitchen baking, or running around after her grandchildren, great grandchildren, and neighborhood children. She is known for her magic touch of getting any baby to sleep and making sure no child goes without a chocolate chip cookie. Together they have three children, Jamie, Nathan, and Nolan, nine grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. They both love spending time with their family, being outdoors, and laughing together.
Jim has been a fair member since 1975 and was fair president from 1979 to 1988. He has been involved in the fair for over 44 years. He has been extremely influential in organizing the tractor pulls at the fair and making sure they run smoothly and are successful. If there’s a tractor pull or truck pull you know he’ll be in the weigh station taking care of business there. He has been a constant supporter of the 4H clubs and activities in the barn during the fair. He is always willing to lend a helping hand when needed. Anita has been a dedicated fairgoer and supporter over the years. You can usually find her taking a shift at one of the admission gates or in the barn helping 4Hers and their animals. Jim, with the support of Anita, has shown commitment and dedication to our county fair.
2018 Friend of the Fair – Deveron Wilcox
The Sullivan County Fair is so fortunate to have Deveron Wilcox as an officer and a board member. He is currently serving as president of the fair. He and his wife Kay are the best example of volunteers for the Sullivan County Fair. No one works harder at maintaining and improving the fairgrounds. He is a dedicated volunteer who spends a great deal of time on keeping the fair running smoothly. Deveron always encourages all the board members to participate in the monthly meetings, as well as other activities such as work bees.
Deveron and Kay participate in many other community services, such as the Red Cross, Sullivan County Food Bank, and the Forksville Fire Company. Along with giving back to their community, they value their family. Deveron & Kay attend almost all of their grandsons’ sporting events. They are a tremendous asset not just to the Sullivan County Fair, but to the entire community.
2017 Friend of the Fair – Bill and Nancy Hart
The late William B. (Bill) Hart (left) was a Sullivan County Fair member for more than 40 years, serving as vice president and on the fair board for more than 35 years. His wife, Nancy, also served as a board member for 10 years.
Bill and Nancy have been faithful members and have been very generous to the fair over the years. They purchased the concrete for the Hart Building floor, and Bill was instrumental in bringing the pavilion down from the church camp and erecting it in its present spot. Bill was always willing to lend the fair his machinery and manpower for fair improvements. Their generosity is one reason the “Hart Building” was named that. Nancy helps with the judging and Senior Citizens Day and is always available to work the gate if needed during fair week.
We will sorely miss Bill who passed away April 18th. Our condolences to his wife and family. We know that Nancy will follow through in Bill’s footsteps helping whenever and wherever she can.