Racers turn the corner at a go kart race at the 2017 Piatt County Fair.

The Piatt County Fair is doubling down on Saturday events in an attempt to attract people to the event, slated for June 13-16 at the fairgrounds in Cerro Gordo.

Additions include a cheerleading clinic at 10 a.m. and a kickball tourney at 1 p.m. Those will add to the non-livestock judging and bags tournament that start at 9 a.m., the swine show at 10 a.m., Celebrate our Youth including a “Parade of Babies” at 11 a.m., Master Gardener demonstrations and an evening with the band Wreckless Whiskey at 9 p.m.

Parade of Babies entries can be registered by calling Tina Bolsen at 217-620-8185.

I’m quite confident that will bring people down here,” said Fair Board Treasurer Carol Kussart, noting it has been difficult to attract attendees Saturday during the day.

The kickball tournament will serve the dual purpose of providing entertainment and as a fundraiser.

Our community preschool approached us about a kickball tournament, so it will help them out,” added Kussart.

Teams can register by calling Brittany at 217-972-9005.

The fair officially kicks off with the opening of the beer barn at noon on Thursday (June 13), with the popular Go Kart races highlighting the evening at 6:30 p.m.

Friday will feature the ITPA Tractor Pull at 6:30 p.m., the Antics performing at 8:30 p.m., and Action Inflatables for children from 5 to 9 p.m.

The four-day fair concludes Sunday with the Piatt County Outlaw Hookers Antique Tractor Pull at 11 a.m.

Livestock shows dominate the morning hours, with a Dairy Show at 9 a.m. Friday, Swine Show at 10 a.m. Saturday, and Beef Show at 10 a.m. Sunday.

Non-livestock entries will be on display at 5 p.m. Friday and judged at 9 a.m. the next day.

Kussart said fair officials erased longstanding debt a few years ago, and are determined to live within their means. That meant shortening the fair a few years ago.

We just want to remain self sufficient and not borrow operating funds,” she said.

A reverse raffle – which raised $11,000 this year – helps fund the fair, along with leasing of the go kart track, and providing winter storage at the fairgrounds for campers and boats. State funds also help pay for premiums that are awarded, but that revenue stream has been unreliable in recent years.