The Kansas Fairgrounds Foundation was established in 2003 to help enrich the unforgettable memories and traditions you experience only at the Kansas State Fair and on the Kansas State Fairgrounds year-round.
To inspire excellence and understanding of Kansas agriculture, industry and culture through the Kansas State Fair, activities, educational programs and opportunities.
To further the renovation, construction, preservation and beautification of the Kansas State Fairgrounds.
To help, assist, promote, support, maintain, enhance, endow and advance the interests of the Kansas State Fair.
To encourage education of the public about the Kansas State Fair and its purpose and activities.
Why does the Kansas Fairgrounds Foundation exist?
The Kansas State Fair is a self-supporting fee-fund state agency and therefore receives very, very limited state funding. Despite the fair’s long and successful history, there is a need for new funds to improve and renovate aging facilities, build new facilities and to provide education programming while retaining the Kansas State Fair traditions.
The Kansas Fairgrounds Foundation, since its inception, has supported multiple projects on the Kansas State Fairgrounds. From 2005 to 2021 the Foundation raised and invested approximately $1.5M in projects, upgrades, new equipment, building improvements and renovations. These projects range widely, but all were investment in the Kansas State Fair to help beautify, renovate and preserve the fairgrounds as well as to support programs and activities of the Fair. The Foundation has often provided the resources and funds needed for those things that often go unnoticed.
A few examples of Foundation funded projects include:
- Lair Steckline Interactive Water Fountain
- Historic Lighting Repair & Refurbishing in center lawn area
- Legacy Benches throughout the fairgrounds
- Established the Wall of Honor in the Prairie Pavilion
- Big fans in the livestock barns and Prairie Pavilion
- Walkway improvements – concrete and curbs
- Birthing Center – pens and gates
- KSF Information Center signage
- Lair White House – built and furnished
The Kansas Fairgrounds Foundation Board of Directors
The Kansas Fairgrounds Foundation Board of Directors is a working and dedicated board made up of people who love the Kansas State Fair and willingly give of their time, talents, knowledge and resources for the betterment of the Kansas State Fair. From 2003 until March 2021 the Foundation activities and fundraising were predominately board driven with assistance from Kansas State Fair staff. In March 2021, the Foundation hired their first full-time Executive Director to manage the activities of the Foundation.
2022 Kansas Fairgrounds Foundation Board of Directors
|Kate Evans||Vice Chairperson||Lebo|
|Brad Rayl||At Large||Buhler|
|West McArthur||Immediate Past Chairman||Salina|
Kansas State Fair Board Representatives
|Harmon Bliss||KSF Board President||Jetmore|
|Paula Landoll-Smith||KSF Board Vice President||Marysville|
|Bob Atkisson||KSF Board Secretary||Stockton|
Grand Drive Representative
|Eric Martin||Grand Drive Committee Chair||Bucklin|
|Mary Alice Lair||Chanute|
|James Fisher||Executive Director||Hutchinson|
|Connie Schmitt||Kansas State Fair Staff Liaison||Hutchinson|