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County fair carries on in face of flood

LAWRENCEVILLE - Despite flood conditions around Gwinnett on Monday, county fair organizers said the show must go on.

Monday night's performer, singer Gene Watson, was doing a sound check about 5 p.m. in preparation for his 7:30 concert under the cover of the fairground's entertainment building.

"We'd have a lot of disappointed people if that didn't happen," fair manager Dale Thurman said of Watson's show.

Despite the unlikeliness of carnival rides opening Monday evening, indoor events and activities were still taking place at the fairgrounds. Inside the barn, the Charolais cattle show was under way and the Angus show was expected to follow, lasting until about 9 or 9:30 p.m.

Still, in his 14 years with the Gwinnett County Fair, Thurman hasn't seen rainfall dampen the annual event for such an extended period of time.

"We've had rainy days," he said, "but never had anything like this."

Thurman said county fair organizers will continue to make decisions regarding the opening of rides on a day-to-day basis.

"We just hope we open each day," Thurman said. "We'll be here through Sunday either way and hopefully give people a chance to enjoy (the fair)."