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Fair opens tonight

For the first time, booths at the Exchange Club Spring Fling Fair will be operated by local school groups to help them raise money for their respective needs. The Exchange Club will host the Spring Fling event Friday and Saturday from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Exchange Club Park.

“It’s a win-win situation,” Brookhaven Exchange Club Treasurer Bill Haag said.

He said booths were given to any school group that wanted to raise money. There was no charge for the rental, and the groups will be able to use games and equipment for free. The Exchange Club is providing the groups with prizes, so they won’t have to spend extra money on leftover prizes. Haag said the groups will only pay for the prizes they actually use.

Haag said the idea of opening up the booths to school groups came after the organization noticed that several booths were closed during recent fairs. In order to have the entire fair lit up, one of the members suggested that they allow the many school organizations – cheerleaders, booster clubs, etc. – to use the booths to raise money.

“That way we can light up the midway as well as the rides,” Haag said.

The fair will also have food for sale and the Enterprise Attendance Center and West Lincoln Attendance Center Future Farmers of America organizations will host a petting zoo for younger kids and people young at heart.

“We really hope it takes off and grows, and more groups get involved,” Haag said. He said this year’s fair organization was headed up by board member Jeremy Brown and Exchange Club President Mike Walley.

The money the Exchange Club raises goes toward scholarships and maintenance of the park, and the remainder goes to different organizations throughout Lincoln County. One of the Exchange Club’s largest projects includes providing $4,000 in scholarships every year.

“All our money stays in our area,” Haag said.

The funds the Exchange Club has raised from past fairs have gone to Doll’s House, the Berean Children’s Home, the Junior Auxiliary of Brookhaven and towards the Relay for Life walk held in the city.

“We feel like our money goes to better use in the hands of the people who have first-hand experience dealing with issues. We just raise the money,” Haag said.

Armbands to enjoy the rides will costs $10. For kids 5 and under, armbands will be half off. Armbands will be available for purchase at the park.