On Wednesday, June 13th, The Friends of the Sauk County Fairgrounds hosted an event to celebrate the completion of their 19-kilowatt solar array. The Friends of Sauk County Fairgrounds is a nonprofit whose mission is to help fundraise and support the preservation of the historic Sauk County Fairgrounds.

Located in the City of Baraboo, the 24-acre Sauk County Fairgrounds is now home to two solar arrays, totaling 52 panels. These installations, completed by All Sky Energy, are projected to generate over 26,000-kilowatt hours of electricity annually. By doing so, they will contribute to a 43% reduction in the fairgrounds’ yearly electric utility costs.

Steeped in a rich history spanning more than 150 years, the Sauk County Fairgrounds remains home to several original structures, a testament to their enduring legacy. These fairgrounds hold immense significance as a venue for historical preservation. While the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted their usual lineup of events, it also presented an opportunity for the Sauk County Fair to prioritize cost-saving measures, ensuring its continuation for another 150 years.

For the youth community in the region, the Sauk County Fair has served as a valuable educational resource, imparting knowledge about the vital role of agriculture. “By installing solar energy, we are showing a continued commitment to providing a safe venue for our youth to develop these skills, a long-term solution for cost savings, and the importance of helping save the environment at the same time,” said Amy Bible, treasurer of the Friends of the Sauk County Fairgrounds.

The Friends of the Sauk County Fairgrounds received funding from various organizations, including Focus on Energy and Solar for Good. Solar for Good, a program initiated by RENEW Wisconsin and the Couillard Solar Foundation, aims to promote and support solar power among mission-based nonprofits in Wisconsin. The collaborative efforts of these organizations have enabled the realization of these solar installations.

The Sauk County Fair prides itself on its inclusive nature, welcoming families of all income levels to explore the grounds at no cost. The installation of these solar arrays will not only contribute to preserving the fair’s legacy for future generations but also serve as a powerful symbol of environmental stewardship and technological progress for the residents of Sauk County.

The funds saved through this sustainable initiative will be redirected towards public education initiatives on agriculture and the preservation, maintenance, and upkeep of the fairgrounds’ century-old buildings and grounds. This forward-thinking approach ensures that the fair will continue to serve as a beacon of heritage, knowledge, and enjoyment for years to come.

Completing these solar arrays at the Sauk County Fairgrounds marks a momentous achievement in their mission to preserve and promote the historic fairgrounds. Through installing these solar arrays, the Friends of the Sauk County Fairgrounds are embracing sustainable practices and demonstrating their commitment to providing a safe venue for youth development, achieving long-term cost savings, and fostering environmental responsibility. This project is proof of the combined efforts of different organizations and highlights the long-lasting importance of the Sauk County Fair. It ensures that future generations can still enjoy its fascinating history and everything it provides.