Weather rules at the Kane County Fair, and so far so great this week.
"The fair is a weather-driven program. You never know what's going to happen," Larry Breon, who has been fair president 30 years, said just before Wednesday's opening day.
The last few years, Breon said, attendance has fluctuated between 75,000 to 150,000, greatly depending on the weather conditions. Last year, around 75,000 people attended over the five days of the fair.
Though he didn't have precise figures, Breon said Friday he estimated attendance was up 80 percent the first few days compared to last year.
On Friday evening, the grandstand was packed with fans of bull riding as the Professional Championship Bull Riders took center ring.
Each rider got up to 8 seconds in the ring, a short, but adrenaline-packed few seconds between man and animal.
Rider Cody Kelly. of downstate Benton. was busy preparing his ropes just before he got up on the bull.
"I've been doing this since I was old enough to walk, Kelly said. "It's just the love for it. You gotta love it or you ain't got no business doing it."
That love of bull riding was contagious among the fans in the audience who cheered as each of the 30-plus riders had their action-packed moments with the bulls.
Attendance should be on the upswing this weekend. The forecast calls for sunny and pleasant conditons with temperatures in the low-80s on Saturday and Sunday.
The fair is open noon to midnight Saturday and noon to 10 p.m. Sunday.
On Saturday, there's more bull riding at 2 p.m., The 4-H Talent Contest winners perform at 3 p.m. and the 4-H Milking Derby at 5:30 p.m. Sunday features the Blue Ribbon Sale at 1 p.m. at the Livestock Arena, the demolition derby at 2 and 7 p.m., the Neverly Brothers perform at 4 p.m. and American English at 7 p.m.
General admission is $10 this weekend. Grandstand shows, carnival rides, food and other features cost extra. Visit www.KaneCountyFair.com, or call (630) 584-6926.