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Gearing up

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Group hoping Sprint Cup fans will take a pit stop in Owen County on their way to race

By John Whitlock

With thousands of people expected to roll through Owen County for Kentucky’s first NASCAR Sprint Cup race, a group of concerned citizens are hoping to put the spotlight on Owen County during the first-ever Fan Fair.
David Morgan of the Owen County Visioneers, an extension of the Leadership Owen County group, said the potential of having thousands of visitors is too big an opportunity to miss.
“This is a major event and we can introduce a lot of people to what we have in Owen County,” Morgan said. “Sometimes, we are too close to notice everything we have to offer. But to others, everything may be new and fresh.”
Working with Holly Bowling of Halloween Express, the Visioneers are organizing and targeting groups and businesses that will showcase Owen County and everything it has to offer.
“Holly and her team have been instrumental in bringing all this about,” Morgan said.
Fan Fair will be located on U.S. Highway 127 North at the lot directly in front of the Owen County Industrial Park and will feature a welcome center, large tents and a mall area.
The Visioneers are encouraging Owen countians to showcase their business, tourist attraction, organization or talent.
“We kind of see it as a mini-county fair with lots of interesting exhibits and activities focusing on families and what we have to offer here in Owen County,” Morgan said.
Each visitor to stop by Fan Fair will receive a small gift package that will include a brochure detailing restaurants, lodging, shops and information about Owen County.
By targeting family fun, Morgan hopes stopping by Owen County will become an annual event for Sprint Cup fans, not only during racing season but throughout the year.
“We want this to become a habit,” Morgan said. “We want people to have a good time and make sure they do this every year — year after year.”
As the planning continues, Morgan said he has found out a lot about Owen County and its resources and everything that the county has to offer.
“We are looking at this as a real opportunity not only to show visitors what we have but to let the people of Owen County know all the wonderful things that are here in this county. There is a lot to be discovered.”
To assist visitors in getting to know Owen County, videos will be shown.
The Fan Fair will take place daily from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. July 6-10.
July 8 will be designated Owen County Day and will include the Owen County Farmers’ Market operating at the site for one day.
Spaces will be allotted to vendors at no cost.
So far, the Visioneers have received a commitment for donations or booth events from Itron, Elk Creek Winery, New Horizons Medical Clinic, Farm Bureau, Kentucky Lamb Board, Kentucky Pork Producers, Peoples Bank, Paula Gatewood Stables, Owen County Beef Producers, Owen County Farmers’ Market, Owen County Historical Society, Antique Tractors, Sunshine Grow Shop, Halloween Express and Melvin Green Crafts.
For more information on volunteers or setting up a booth, contact Pat Beverly at 750-3342 or patbeverly4@yahoo.com or Bowling at 514-1495 or by e-mail at holly.bowling@halloweenexpress.com.