July 19, 2022
Missouri is making a huge investment in the state fairgrounds over the next two years, with a price tag of more than $47 million.
Missouri State Fair Director Mark Wolfe says the majority of the funds come from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), but additional money from the state will lead to improvements to the fairgrounds and a better overall fair experience for exhibitors and visitors.
Some highlights include a new covered arena that will take two years to build. The first year, the building will be designed, with the second year designated for construction. Wolfe is working to hire a designer for the project. Other plans include adding campsites and electric charging stations.
“We are so fortunate to have a governor so supportive of the state fairgrounds and agriculture,” Wolfe says. “There are many in the state legislature who have helped make this funding a reality as well.”
Timeline for projects
Wolfe says the bills are waiting for signatures. ARPA funds need to be used by the end of 2026 unless an extension is granted.
The state has been releasing funds in batches based on its ability to oversee projects from design to completion, Wolfe says. He foresees this approach continuing moving forward.
Here is a breakdown of the budgeted funds for 2023:
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