BLACKFOOT ‚ÄĒ After a lifetime of service to the Eastern Idaho State Fair, Jeffrey and Bobbette Wright have been named as Grand Marshals for the 2017 EISF, representing Power County. This powerhouse couple has been instrumental in many lives of 4-H youth over the years, by tirelessly dedicating their energy and resources to leading different aspects of the program, particularly in horse care.
‚ÄúThere‚Äôs nothing out there like 4-H,‚ÄĚ says Jeff. ‚ÄúIt teaches responsibility as well as builds character and leadership in kids.‚ÄĚ
Not only was the couple involved in 4-H, their three daughters and five grandchildren keep the tradition alive to this day. There hasn‚Äôt been very many years, if any, when someone from the family wasn‚Äôt displaying a prized animal at the Eastern Idaho State Fair.
Jeff and Bobbette have a long history with the Eastern Idaho State Fair. Not only have they participated in their 4-H capacities as presenters, but Jeff served on Board of Directors from 1998 until he retired as Chairman in 2012. The Board of Directors of the Eastern Idaho State Fair is compromised of 6 appointees from the 16-county region the fair represents. This group of esteemed individuals is responsible for making major decisions involving all aspects of the Eastern Idaho State Fair, including the decision to add an extra day to the annual event. Starting in 2017, the fair will officially open on the Friday before Labor Day and continue as normal through the following Saturday.
‚ÄúThis extra day has been a long time coming. There is too much entertainment and events for just eight days, people need to be able to spread it out so they can come more,‚ÄĚ says Jeff. ‚ÄúNext year let‚Äôs add another four to six days and maybe then there will be time to do it all.‚ÄĚ
Jeff and Bobbette recognize the hard work put into the fair each year by countless staff. The couple says the fact people keep coming back is a tribute to not only them but everyone who works so hard to put the fair together.
‚ÄúMost people don‚Äôt realize the fair is a year-round job,‚ÄĚ says Jeff. ‚ÄúBut it never felt like work to me. I always enjoyed the people; meeting new friends and catching up with old ones.‚ÄĚ
The friendships Jeff made carry over today, including an annual guys fishing trip in Alaska with other fair volunteers.
Individuals are what make the fair great!¬† Jeff and Bobbette are two of those individuals whose contributions to the Fair, 4-H and the Eastern Idaho community we celebrate. Jeff provided steady leadership as a Board of Director for over a decade and never ceases to put a smile on your face says Brandon Bird, General Manager of the Eastern Idaho State Fair.
Outside of their fair duties, both Jeff and Bobbette worked in the community of American Falls for many years. Bobbette is a real estate agent and has been named Realtor of the Year several times throughout her career. She‚Äôs also received the Volunteer of the Year through the American Falls Chamber of Commerce. Jeff worked with the Idaho Department of Transportation for over 40 years, as a foreman of vegetation control.
Now that Jeff is officially retired, though he works part time at a seed company because ‚Äúwhen you stop working, you die‚ÄĚ he jokingly says, the couple has enjoyed traveling all over the world together. Agreeing that Greece and Italy were on the top of the list, they have been all over Europe and plan to head to Scandinavia this fall.
‚ÄúI think I‚Äôm way too young to be the Grand Marshal because I have a lot of living left to do,‚ÄĚ laughs Jeff. ‚ÄúBut we are thankful for this honor and look forward to seeing all of our friends at the fair in September.‚ÄĚ