Manual students’ thoughts on the Kentucky State Fair


Erika Fletcher

Swing ride of a carnival. Photo courtesy of Erika Fletcher.

Lydia Morgan

Police arrested nine individuals, including three adults and six minors, at the Kentucky State Fair on Aug. 20. Only some of those arrested were involved in the incident involving the imitation of gunshots. Other charges included receiving stolen property and disorderly conduct. 

After these events, the Kentucky State Fair Board updated many safety policies, including the Minor Attendance Policy. Now, all minors under 18 must be accompanied by an adult 21 or older. Additionally, each adult may only chaperone six minors at a time. 

As the majority of Manual students are minors, this policy update affected many students’ plans to attend the fair. 

“We had to have an adult go with us and go earlier in the day,” Abby Gentner (10, MST) shared. Overall, the experience didn’t make up for her inconveniences. “It was mediocre. The food was pretty overpriced and so were the rides. We went on a couple of rides and they were fun, but the lines were too long to stand in for anything else.”

The safety concerns that caused these policy updates also discouraged many students from attending entirely. 

My family didn’t really feel comfortable going with everything that happened like the shooting and the incredibly high prices,” Roselline Peralta Danger (10, HSU) said.

While some students chose not to attend for safety concerns, others decided to stay away for lack of interest.  

I mainly didn’t go because of a lack of interest in the fair in general; I haven’t been since before the pandemic, and ever since then it has become less of a tradition,” Lain Miller (11, J&C) said. 

Some students who did not attend the State Fair did not have much of a choice. 

“I didn’t go to the Fair this year because I had other things going on,” Eleanor Peterson (11, YPAS) said. “I was very busy with both dance and work.”

While many students did not attend, and some who did attend did not have an enjoyable experience, there were still some students who truly enjoyed themselves at the State Fair this year. 

“I had a lot of fun,” said Eva Kalmbach (10, MST). “I went for a horseback show, and it was all-around great.”