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2024 Theme:
"88 Years of Tradition"

AUGUST 2-10, 2024
Come enjoy the arts & crafts showcase, carnival, concerts, Xtreme Bulls Event, PRCA Rodeo, Livestock Shows, Commercial Vendors, and enjoy some of the best fair food in the area!

FREE ADMISSION until 5:00pm daily
Free 1st Saturday, Sunday, Monday, and Wednesday All Day!
Adults (age 13 & Older) - $10.00 Children (age 6-12) - $5.00 Children 5 & Under - FREE

2024 Lea County Fair & Rodeo Schedule of Events

2024 Fair & Rodeo In Memory of & Dedication

In Memory of - Samantha Jean Kerbo 1971-2023

Samantha Jean Kerbo was born on April 28, 1971 to Barbara Sims and Joe "Sandy" Sims. Samantha grew up on her grandparent's ranch just north of Eunice, NM and was involved in 4-H for many years. Samantha was involved in rodeo and showing animals throughout her teenage years. She ran for Lea County Fair and Rodeo Queen in 1987, getting Miss Congeniality. Samantha enjoyed watching her children, Dustin and Elizabeth, show animals at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo with her husband David. She enjoyed helping her niece and nephews show, while getting to stay with them their first year at the fair.

In Memory of - Terry Criswell 1942-2023

Terry was born on February 7, 1942, in Stonewall County, Texas to David and Jewel Criswell. He passed away at home on February 20, 2023, surrounded by loved ones.

As an avid supporter of the Rodeo, Terry spearheaded the Tate Branch rodeo sponsorship. Throughout his life, he was a member of the Jaycees, the Chamber of Commerce, The NMJC Board of Directors, among others. In 1979, Terry married the love of his life, Nellie. They spent 44 loving years together.

Left to treasure his memory are his beloved wife, Nellie, children Johnny Losoya and Tanya Horn and his twin brother Jerry, as well as 2 grandchildren, 5 great-grandchildren, 4 great-great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews and friends he considered family. He is deeply missed by all those who knew him.

In Memory of - Marvin G. Campbell 1928-2023

Following an honorable discharge from the US Airforce in 1949, Marvin joined his parents on the family farm east of Lovington. He met and married Barbara (Babs) Campbell in 1951. In 1954, Marvin bought his first farm. He stayed on the farm until the age of 92. Marvin and Babs raised three children while living on the farms - Joyce, Buzz and Edie. At his passing, Marvin had seven grandchildren, eighteen great-grandchildren and two great, great grandchildren.

In 1987, Marvin went to work for the Lea County Road Department, retiring in 2001. During this time at the request of the Rodeo Committee, he worked the ground in the rodeo arena each year for the annual PRCA Rodeo. The right type and mixture of sand and dirt, elevation for proper drainage, and depth are essential for a good rodeo. The quality of ground plays a role in the performance and safety of contestants and animals. For fourteen years Marvin was the man behind the scenes that spectators and many contestants never saw, but he ensured the ground was ready on opening day for the rodeo performance.

Marvin's legacy has continued over the years with past and present participation of his son (Buzz), grandson (Jimmy Joe), and great-grandsons (Skylar and Kelton), making the arena worthy of the "Home of Champions."

Dedication - Robin Mack-Haynes

Robin was born and raised in Raton, New Mexico, and grew up in the New Mexico 4-H program taking many projects with the top three being in Sewing, Baking and Leadership. From a young age, Robin learned about the interesting experiences of the local Cooperative Extension Agents, plus their role in the County Fair. Fair time was always a family affair at the Mack house. Although the Colfax County Fair was small, that never stopped Robin or her brother exhibiting multiple entries or attending workdays because her mother was a Club and Project Leader, plus a member of the Fair Board. As a Senior 4-H member she was selected to be a State 4-H Diplomat on the New Mexico 4-H Leadership Team. As a member of the Leadership Team, Robin acquired many lifetime friends as well as working with several extension agents and looked upon them as mentors. It is these mentors that helped Robin choose her future career path.

In the Fall of 1991 Robin started college at New Mexico State University where she majored in Home Economics Education. Throughout college, she worked in the State 4-H Office where she had the opportunity to learn more about the Cooperative Extension Service, and this definitely fueled the fire for her becoming a Home Economist/4-H Agent. Upon graduation from college, Robin took her first extension job as the Home Economist/4-H Agent in Luna County. Robin loved working with the Homemakers and 4-H youth by encouraging leadership and home economics with all she taught through her programs.

Robin moved to Lea County in the Fall of 1998 and by Spring she had a job with the Lea County Extension office. Robin worked with the Nutrition Educators on the SNAP-Ed Grant, teaching many youth and adult nutrition education through games and cooking demonstrations. In the Spring of 2002, Robin had earned her Master’s Degree from NMSU and moved into the County Extension Home Economist position. Robin worked with the other agents to promote extension programs in Diabetes Cooking, Childcare Education, Sewing/Quilting/Crafts, Parenting Education, plus many, many other topics. The Homemaker Club members were always anxious to learn and attend the meetings Robin would have on a new topic and workshop. The highlight of the summer was always doing sewing, baking and canning workshops for 4-H members who were getting their projects ready for the county fair.

Robin’s first Lea County Fair was in 1999 when she stepped in to help out as a volunteer. Each year you would find Robin in the Yucca Building with numerous volunteers taking entries and creating displays for the public to enjoy. Robin always thought it was a wonderful feeling to walk into the Yucca Building and see all the exhibits displayed, the quilts hanging, and blue ribbons everywhere, not to mention seeing and hearing the smiles and excitement of everyone seeing how their items placed.

Over the years, Robin passed down her love of entering items in the County Fair to her daughter, Madison. Madison began entering items when she was old enough and even branched out into the Horse Barn for most of her 4-H career. One of the funniest County Fair memories remembered was the year, Robin and her husband, Darrel, entered pickles in the County Fair. Darrel won Reserve Grand Champion on his pickles and Robin came away with 2nd place. He still brings that up during canning season.

Robin retired at the end of 2022 as the County Home Economist after 26 years with the NMSU Extension Service. The Lea County Fair has always been a place you could go and see and visit with everyone from across the county; and Robin will always continue to enjoy visiting with all the friends she made along her way, the many memories, and swapping old stories during the Lea County Fair. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving me this opportunity.

Dedication - Wayne Cox

It is certainly an honor to have the 88th Lea County Fair and Rodeo dedicated in my honor as well as my family. The Lea County Fair has been and will continue to be a highlight for me and my family.

I became a part of the county fair in 1984 as an exhibitor of market steers and market lambs. I exhibited livestock at the county show up to 1990.After finishing my show career, I became a volunteer assisting other young members with their show projects at both the county and state level.

After graduation from Hobbs High School, I went to Clarendon College in the panhandle of Texas where I was a member the collegiate livestock judging team for two years. While at Clarendon College, I received my Associate Degree of Science and transferred to New Mexico State University. After some years at NMSU, I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Education and Extension in 1993 and a Master of Science in Agricultural Education and Extension in 1996.

During my time at NMSU as a graduate student, I found the love of my life and my best friend. Montyne and I exchanged vows on January 7th, 1995. At that time, I was teaching High School Agriculture in Socorro, NM. We spent the spring semester in Socorro before I returned home to teach Agriculture at New Mexico Junior College from the fall of 1995 until December 2004. Subsequently, I joined New Mexico State University in January 2005, where I served as the Lea County Extension Agriculture and 4-H Agent until my retirement in the summer of 2020.

Before assuming the role of Extension Agent, I dedicated three years of service as a member of the Fair board, spanning from 2002 to 2004. Upon stepping into the position of Agent, I continued my involvement by serving as the livestock superintendent from 2005 to 2019. It was truly gratifying to contribute to the development and support of the youth of Lea County in this capacity.

I am most proud of my wife and family. My wife has been the rock that I have needed throughout my career. She has been a constant source of strength, standing by me as I dedicated myself to my work in agriculture and youth training. And, she has been and will always be the glue that kept our family growing and strong. We are the proud parents of Tyler and Tanner Cox. Both exhibited livestock at the Lea County Fair from 2008-2015. Both sons have since graduated from Tarleton State University with degrees in agriculture, a testament to their dedication and hard work. Montyne and I couldn't be prouder of our boys. In May of this year, Montyne and I are proud to add a daughter-in-law, Mattie, to our family, and we eagerly anticipate welcoming Sadie as our next daughter-in-law in March of next year. Our family is my greatest source of joy in my life.

I would like to thank the Lea County Fair and Rodeo for bestowing this honor upon me and my family. Thanks again!

Dedication - Larry Wheeler

Larry Wheeler, a lifelong resident of Lovington, dedicates himself to ranching with a focus on raising club calves for showing and Registered Angus cattle. With family ties deeply embedded in Lea County’s Fair and Rodeo, Larry’s upbringing was steeped in the tradition of showing beef cattle and pigs. Continuing this legacy, his 3 children, Blain, Kylie, and Tripp, have all shown cattle here, many of which they raised. The Wheeler family has shown cattle at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo for 61 consecutive years leading several grand champion steers and earning numerous beef breeder of the year recognitions. Following in the footsteps of his father and brother, Larry served the county as the beef superintendent. He also served on the fair board for 6 years, with 4 of those being the fair board chairman. Larry’s love for the fair and rodeo helped guide his drive to keep the cherished traditions alive in Lea County

Dedication - Frank Harmon "Red" Hann

A near-lifelong supporter of the Lea County Fair and Rodeo, former actor and stuntman, artist, and co-publisher of the Lea County Tradition magazine, Hann has worked tirelessly to promote and preserve Western heritage for future generations.

“My first experience at the Fair was in 1944,” Hann recalls. “Back then, there was a dance in the old hay barn. Some of my cousins were there, and they taught me to dance.” His ability to dance has served him well, and he has passed on his love of music and dancing throughout his life, teaching many others along the way.

As founder and producer of the Pony Express West Trail rides, Hann’s efforts encouraged local riders and their families to experience “life” on the open range. Initially a fundraising effort for the Chamber of Commerce in Ft. Stockton, Texas in the mid-1970s, Hann brought the Pony Express trail rides to Lea County to promote attendance at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo.

Hann graduated from Hobbs High School, where he illustrated the high-school yearbook. He also attended Eastern New Mexico University and served in the U.S. Air Force. He later returned to the University of Puget Sound, where he earned a B. A. in Art History. Hann has sketched and painted people from all walks of life, from local children and families to actors John Wayne, Ken Curtis, “Bronco” Billy Anderson, and film producer John Ford.

Hann resides in Amarillo, Texas, where he continues to sketch, paint, enjoy his favorite western swing music, and tell stories to those around him.

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