Kentucky State Fair attendance drops - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Kentucky State Fair attendance drops

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This was the first time fair attendance dropped below 600,000 since 2012. (Source: WAVE 3 News) This was the first time fair attendance dropped below 600,000 since 2012. (Source: WAVE 3 News)
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Rain, thunderstorms and extreme heat likely contributed to lower attendance at the 110th Kentucky State Fair, which ended its 11-day run on Sunday, Aug. 24.

The 2014 fair drew 515,937 visitors, dipping below 600,000 for the first time in two years.

[SLIDESHOW: 2014 Kentucky State Fair by the numbers]

Despite the decrease in attendance, the Kentucky State Fair Board says other areas saw growth, including the competitive entry departments and World's Championship Horse Show. Both areas had a total of 58,449 entries, an increase of more than 1,500 from last year's figures.

[SLIDESHOW: Kentucky State Fair World's Championship Horse Show]

Marked by 100 degree heat indexes and thunderstorms, the rain-soaked final weekend of the fair dampened overall attendance numbers, down from last year's total of 615,648. Rain fell on eight of the 11 days of the fair, most notably on Saturday, Aug. 23 when the Joan Jett and the Blackhearts free outdoor concert had to be canceled.

[SLIDESHOW: WAVE 3 News Day at the fair]

"The same thing that affected us affected other area activities as well, and still the fair continues to be one of the most popular events in the state and draws people from acros the region," said Rip Rippetoe, President and CEO of the Kentucky State Fair Board. "It represents the best that Kentucky offers."

Rippetoe added that the fair creates hundreds of temporary jobs, provides millions in economic revenue and offers people from Kentucky a chance to showcase themselves.

Click here to find out what it takes to produce the commonwealth's largest summertime event.

Copyright 2014 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.

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