Contact: Karen LaFlamme, (253) 841-5024 or cell (253) 691-2005

PUYALLUP, WA, Sept. 22, 2003 - The last person has passed through

the turnstiles, and the gates of the 2003 Puyallup Fair have closed. In total, 1,162,593 peopleattended the 17-day Puyallup Fair, which ran from Sept. 5-21, 2003. This is the 20th highest attendance since the Fair started in 1900, and less than a 2% decline from last year's


After the driest summer in the Pacific Northwest's recorded history,

needed rainfall arrived during several days of the Fair. Thunder and lightening were even added to the mix.

Opening day kicked off with the inaugural Puyallup Fair Western

Rodeo Parade through downtown Puyallup. Equestrian drill teams, draft horse hitches, marching bands and other horse-related groups followed after the annual cattle drive. The U.S. Cavalry Horse Detachment

from Fort Hood, Texas appeared in the parade, and performed to a packed arena each of the first three days of the Fair.

The Spirit of the West exhibit was a one-year-only feature. It

featured the Pee Wee Stampede for 3-6 year old children, where kids donned a cowboy hat and chaps, and rode stick ponies in a mock rodeo. Other exhibit highlights included the Kathleen Jo Ryan photo exhibit,

"Soul of the West," and western paintings by Fred Oldfield. A Native

American exhibit, cowboy campfire gathering for cowboy poetry and song, and showing of old western movies made the Saturn-sponsored exhibit a popular location on the Fairgrounds.

Alaskan artist, Rie Muñoz made appearances the first three days of

the Fair, with many original pieces part of her 17-day art show. Ms. Muñoz donated 25% of the proceeds of her art sales to the Western Washington Fair Association's Scholarship Foundation.

The Puyallup Rodeo finals were filmed by Outdoor Life Network (OLN)

cable to be aired on October 12th; while the "Salute to Freedom" tribute on Sept. 11 featured presentations by Colonel (P) Carter F. Ham, Fort Lewis, and Colonel Eric W. Crabtree from McChord Air Force


Dora the Explorer and Clifford the Big Red Dog made appearances as

costume characters during the Fair, drawing thousands of young fans. A

Guinness World Record was made at the Fair in riding the tetter totter for 75 hours by Brandi Carbee and Natalie Svenvold of Bellingham. Free entertainment is always a highlight of the Fair, and this year was no exception. The Gentlemen Jugglers, a real crowd-pleasing duo, has performed for ten years at the Fair, and celebrated their 770th performance on closing night.

The Puyallup Fair Concert Series sponsored by Columbia Bank included

sold out concerts featuring Rascal Flatts, Weird Al Yankovic, and the Newsboys. Near sell-outs included Alabama, "The American Farewell Tour," and Jars of Clay with tobyMac. Animals, agriculture, exhibits, food and rides, and family fun balanced out the Pacific Northwest tradition.

The 2004 Puyallup Spring Fair will be held April 15-18 at the

Puyallup Fairgrounds, followed by the Puyallup Fair, Sept. 10-26. For information call (253)841-5045 or visit

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