A storm caused damage and injury at the Butler County Fairgrounds. Then the community responded.

Storms on Thursday afternoon caused damage at the Butler County Fairgrounds just three days before the week-long fair was scheduled to begin.

The damage happened around 4:30 p.m. on Thursday during heavy winds, rain and lightning that caused power outages throughout the region.

Crews had cleaned up all of the damage by late Friday morning. The fair begins on Sunday and runs daily through July 27.

Doug Turner, president of the Butler County Fair Board said the fairgrounds were back to normal Friday morning after the strong storm knocked down 100-year-old trees, downed power lines, toppled tents and game

“This one was tilted over on its side and it blew all their stuffed animals all over the fairground,” Turner said about one of the booths that by then was upright again.

Only one person was injured.

“We had one injury, one of the concession people ended up with three stitches and a concussion, a tent post hit him,” Turner said. “Other than that, everyone else thankfully was OK. It was a blessing this happened when it did and not during the fair.”

A ride and concession stand were completely destroyed. Five huge trees came down, knocking out power to the midway area. Officials immediately called Davey’s Tree Service to get rid of them because of the dangerous situation.

Turner said about 150 people flocked to the fairgrounds to help with the clean-up.

“We greatly appreciate everyone who came out to clean up everything,” he said. “It was people that heard we had a mess that just came out and helped clean up and pick up all the stuff and get thing back to normal. A lot of them were fairgoers but some weren’t.”

Adam Achterman was in the small animal barn when the storm hit.

“Big winds came in with a bunch of rain and it was blowing in circles inside and outside the barn because the door blew open,” the 12-year-old said, adding it was “a little bit” frightening.

Turner was already on the phone with the insurance company Friday morning, but it is unclear how much of the damage will be covered.

“We’re in talking stages, that’s all I’m going to say about that right now,” he said.

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