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No more hog wrestling at the Delaware County Fair

Fair Board votes to end the competition after an online petition against it gets 28,000 signatures

There will be no more hog wrestling at the Delaware County Fair

After seven years of hosting the competition where individuals or teams paid for the chance to catch a large hog inside a mud pit and place it in a tire, the board of the fair decided to cancel the event this year after the appearance of an online petition opposing it.  "Our fair has always been made up of family-friendly, positive entertainment," said Mark DiFabio, one of the vice presidents of the Delaware County Fair Board.  "To have anything put a damper on that or not be conducive to good family entertainment, it gave us pause and we decided that may be the best thing to do."

There had never been any protests by animal rights groups at the fair, DiFabio said, unlike last year when protestors picketed the Indiana State Fair over elephant rides.  But a petition was posted this week by Tina York of Indianapolis calling the competition cruel and inconsistent with 4-H standards for the handling of animals, particularly at a fair that features 4-H livestock events.  More than 28,000 people had signed the petition as of Thursday.

No one showed up at Wednesday's fair board meeting to speak against hog wrestling either, but DiFabio says a majority of the board thought it best to not bring any potential negative attention to the fair.  "With our commitment and dedication to putting on the best fair and operating the best fairgrounds around, we're not going to cut off our nose to spite our face," DiFabio said.

The loss of hog wrestling means a loss of revenue for the Muncie fairgrounds - up to $12,000 worth.  $12,000 is now the target of an online fundraising campaign started this week by the Delaware County Fair Board. DiFabio hopes supporters of hog wrestling who would have paid to be part of the event in the past will "put their money where their passion is" by donating to the Go Fund Me campaign.  "Anytime you are missing $10,000 to $12,000, it hurts.  But we are going to do the best we can to come up with a replacement event in that timeslot."  The 163rd edition of the Delaware County Fair is scheduled for July 13-25.



There will be no more hog wrestling at the Delaware County Fair.

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