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Posted on: April 26, 2021

Fairgrounds Strategic Planning Task Force Named

Champions Park entrance

SPRINGFIELD, OH (April 26, 2021) — Three community members and two public servants will serve as the Clark County Fairgrounds Strategic Planning Task Force to map a strategic vision for the Fairgrounds over the next decade.

“The Fairgrounds is the most important gathering place in this county, and we want to ensure its ongoing vitality with sound planning and collaboration,” said Clark County Commission President Melanie Flax Wilt. “This process will involve the various stakeholders and community members through intentional listening. The results will create a foundation from which we can invest in our fairgrounds to ensure it remains a special place for future generations of Clark Countians.”

The community members include: 

  • Angi Kaverman: A graduate of The Ohio State University and a Clark County resident, Kaverman served as the director of the Dairy department at the Ohio State Fair for 10 years. She’s also served as the Chairman of the Spring Dairy Expo. A national cattle exhibitor, Kaverman is the owner/operator of Call-Del Farm and is an active member of the Ohio Holstein Association, Ohio Jersey Breeders Association and the Ohio Purebred Dairy Cattle Association.
  • John Maurer: A Clark County resident, Maurer is a former Clark County Commissioner and president of Esterline & Sons Manufacturing. He served on the Clark County Fair Board for more than 20 years during which time the Champions Center was built on the grounds. Maurer is currently a member of the Convention Facilities Authority. 
  • Sasha Rittenhouse: A graduate of The Ohio State University, Rittenhouse and her family own a cattle farm that consists of 200 brood cows and own and operate a feedlot. She’s a past president of the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association and is an active member of both the Clark County 4H and FFA beef committee and the Clark County Cattle Producers.

Clark County Commission President Melanie Flax Wilt and Clark County Community and Economic Development Director Ethan Harris will also serve on the task force. Clark County Administrator Jenny Hutchinson will serve in an administrative role. The task force is expected to host its first meeting later this week.

The Task Force will be charged with advising Columbus-based Benefactor Group, which was hired by the county to facilitate the process. 

The process as outlined by the Benefactor Group will include stakeholder interviews, two community focus groups and a community-wide survey. Both the Clark County Agricultural Society and the Ohio Equine and Agricultural Association will be actively engaged in the strategic planning process as major stakeholders. 

Earlier this week, developer Champions Innkeepers LLC announced a SpringHill Suites will be included as part of the Champions Park development located near the entrance of the Fairgrounds near Interstate 70 and Ohio 41.The 14-acre mixed-use development is expected to also include a retail and restaurant component, as well as a new entrance and new fair office. The former Army National Guard Armory site was purchased for $125,000 by the Clark County Land Reutilization Corp. in 2019.

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Media contact: Michael Cooper, Public Information Officer, 937-521-2031