The Butte-Lawrence County Fair has been going strong for over 35 years! Held each year in Nisland during the late summer, this small town fair is distinctly “South Dakota”, from the rodeo to the 4-H livestock stock shows.
The 4-H livestock shows and the Friday night livestock sale draw huge crowds from the agricultural community. In addition to livestock, the 4-H program also sponsors a shooting sports demonstration in which over 50 youth from the community had the opportunity to shoot and get a taste of what the 4-H program offers.
“One thing that I enjoy watching is the kids working so hard on their projects and with their animals and seeing their growth and accomplishments,” said Michelle May, the 4-H Youth Program Advisor. “But also, watching them enjoy the fair grounds, the food, and fellowship with one another. For many families it is a vacation of sorts and so that is fun and exciting to see families together in the midst of it all!”
Not only does Michelle enjoy watching the hard work of the 4-H youngsters pay off, but she also appreciates the fairground site!
“There are so many fun and exciting things about the fair but the fairgrounds in and of themselves are very unique! People from all around talk about going to the Butte Lawrence Fairgrounds because it is like a step back in time. The beautiful buildings, especially the Pavilion which is an icon of sorts, have been so beautifully maintained throughout the years. Even after the hail storm most recently, crews came together in a great way to restore the grounds to their iconic beauty. Truly the grounds hold such a history and community support and maintenance have been huge,” explained Michelle.
The fairground is on Highway 212 in Nisland, about 15 miles from Belle Fourche and about 60 miles from Rapid City.
Aside from 4-H livestock shows, other events include bingo, live music, movie nights, a flower show, tractor pull, free barbecue, “dress a rabbit” contest, dance, horseshoe tournament, and rodeo. There is something for everyone at this friendly, small town fair!