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2023 Theme:
"Country Pride, County Wide"

AUGUST 4-12, 2023
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

2022 Fair & Rodeo Dedication & In Memory

Dedication - Kenny Kim

Kenny Kim was born in Hobbs, New Mexico, raised by his parents, Ki Sun and Soon Ja Kim, and his two older siblings, brother Chan Kim and sister, Hea Kim. Kenny graduated from Hobbs High School in 1998. After living in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Lubbock, Texas, Kenny was lured back to Lea County by his brother with the opportunity to open a restaurant which is known as Baja Grill.

Baja Grill, family-owned and operated by the Kim family, opened on May 30th, 2010. In August 2009, before opening the restaurant, the Kim family welcomed the chance to have a food booth at the Lea County Fair. It was a success - fast-forward 13 years later, and they now operate four food booths at the Lea County Fair and two restaurants; Baja Grill in Lovington and BG’s Burgers and More located in Hobbs.

For the past 13 years, Kenny, his family, and Baja Grill have been involved with the Lea County Fair and Rodeo. What started as one food booth has blossomed into four, catering the Queen Luncheons and heading up or helping out with the entertainment catering.

Kenny is committed to making each year better than the last.

Kenny and the Kim family would like to thank the Lea County Fair and Rodeo for allowing them the opportunity to serve so many, not only during the Fair and Rodeo but throughout the year.

In Memory - Ben Powell

As we come together this year to celebrate our cowboys and cowgirls, we would like to honor the memory of one on Rodeo’s biggest fans, Ben Robert Powell. Ben passed away this year on February 7th but I am sure he is with us today because he would never miss the local fair and rodeo. Ben was a great husband, a father, a Lea County sheep and cattle rancher and a welder. Ben was born March 15, 1943, in Lubbock, Tx to Marvin and Jeanette Powell of Lovington, NM. Ben grew up in Lea County and graduated high school from Lovington. Ben was a team roper and bronc rider in his younger days. He married Elizabeth Powell on December 2, 1972, and took on 2 stepchildren, Mark Scisson and Sherral Trotter. He coached them through sports and helped them show steers and he taught them to ride. Ben and Elizabeth had 2 more children, Kasey White and Kendra Powell. He coached Little Dribblers basketball at Tatum and put his kids in 4-H and FFA and taught them many life skills. Ben started raising show lambs in 1987 and started the Dorset class at the Lea County Fair. Kasey and Kendra showed lambs, steers and dairy heifers with the guidance of their dad every step of the way. He believed that if you taught your children how to take care of an animal and keep them alive, you were learning and doing something worthwhile.

Ben Powell served on the Tatum school board for 24 years. Education was very important to him. Ben was the owner of a welding business and built many metal barns, shops, dairy barns, fences and shoots for the people of Lea County. Ben provided the sheep for the annual Lea County Fair and Rodeo mutton busting for many years. He and Elizabeth cooked and organized the Old Folks Day at the Lea County Fair.

Ben not only raised show lambs for his kids and the kids of New Mexico but also his grand kids and produced another good crop of lambs this year even though he did not live long enough to see the results, his grandkids will show his lambs proudly this year. His daughter Kendra will continue the legacy and continue to breed and raise show lambs. Ben loved his 10 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren. The lessons he taught will be instilled into them for a lifetime.

In Memory - Edwin Johnston

William “Ed” Johnston was born July 27, 1934 in Ranger, Texas, the middle child and only son to Ernest and Sarah Johnston. He moved to Monument, NM when he was only 5 years old.

Ed attended school in Eunice, NM where he met the love of his life, Frances, and married her in 1952.Ed and Frances celebrated 69 years together and during that time raised three children, Keith, DeEtta and Kyle. In 1962, Ed began his ranching career, where he raised Herefords and later added cross bred cattle and Registered Angus to his operation. Ed was also pivotal in bringing the Chianina breed to Lea County. Ed was a member of the New Mexico Angus Association. In 2018, Ed and Frances were recipients of the Lea County Cowboy Hall of Fame Outstanding Ranchers Award.

Ed was so dedicated to Lea County, that he served 25 years on the Lea County Fair Board as a member and chairman. Ed truly believed in the value of 4-H and FFA programs, so along with Frances began their involvement as organizational leaders for the Monument 4-H.There, they dedicated 37 years. During this tenure, they were instrumental in expanding the Monument 4-H chapter to the largest at that time with 50 members and because of their impact on the youth development, they were honored together in 2003 by being inducted into the New Mexico 4-H Hall of Fame. In 2018, Ed and Frances were honored by being one of the Lea County Fair & Rodeo dedication honorees.

Ed looked forward every year to the Fair and Rodeo. Ed held box seats at the rodeo for 25+ years & here is where he enjoyed catching up with lifelong friends. But he was most passionate about the Jr Livestock Shows. His greatest joy was watching his grandchildren, Kendra, Zac & Kaleb show their show steers and his great-grandson Tripp show his horses. One year Ed raised the Grand Champion Steer. Because of Ed’s continued dedication to the youth and his mission to support positive youth development, he alongside Frances, was instrumental in strengthening the Sale of Champions, knowing the importance of rewarding youth for their hard work and accomplishments by buying their livestock projects, not only in Lea County, but New Mexico State Fair and Eastern NM State Fair.

Ed’s love for ranching and his cattle herd will be carried on in his memory by his loving wife, son Kyle and dedicated ranch hand Wes Bowers.

The family would like to thank the Lea County Fair & Rodeo Board for honoring Ed’s memory at the 2022 Lea County Fair & Rodeo that Ed was so dedicated to.

In Memory - Giles Lee

Giles Lee was born in Midland, Texas on December 10, 1922 to Dick and Viola Lee. The family relocated to Lea County, New Mexico and the Swamp Angel Ranch in 1925 when Giles' father and the Scharbauer family of Midland formed a partnership to purchase ranch country in Lea county. Giles attended the Lovington Schools, graduating in 1941 and entered New Mexico A&M College in the fall. After a year of college, he joined the Army Air Corps and was a Staff Sergeant and Crew Chief on a B-17 aircraft during World War II. Giles returned to New Mexico A&M following the war to finish his degree or as he put it, mostly to rodeo! At New Mexico A&M, he was one of the founders of the College Rodeo Team.

In 1947, Giles married Joie Anderson and they returned to Swamp Angel Ranch. Giles established the Lea County Team Roping Championship in 1959, holding the event in his arena for many years. He also held Wednesday night team ropings in his arena during the summers.

Giles was a Gold Card member of the PRCA, Director of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Alumni, and one of the founders of the Senior Steer Roper's Association. He was honored by the Haley Library of Midland with the Foy Proctor Cowman's Award.

Giles' family includes three daughters and husbands, Libby and Danny Berry, Becky and Brad Christmas, and Mary Ann and Bub Waldrop. Seven grandchildren and four great grandchildren completed his family. Giles passed away in 2021. His wife, Joie and three grandsons preceded him in death.

In Memory - Ross Caviness

Ross Caviness was born in New Mexico in 1950 and spent his life ranching, farming and supporting FFA and 4-H programs. Showing livestock is where his passion for 4H and FFA all started. The Caviness family traveled to many states for livestock shows and were always very competitive. As an FFA member, he began raising show pigs, then ventured into raising show lambs which led to Ross raising club calves. In 1995, he raised the Grand Champion steer at the NMSF, along with numerous breed and grand champions over the years. He had a passion for helping kids and families with their show projects and he did just that for 50 years. Ross’ greatest joy was supporting his kids and then his grandkids in all of their activities. He is the the definition of what old livestock men label a ‘trader’ and a true stockman. His zest for life and big, contagious laugh will be missed. Ross enjoyed county fairs to compete, reunite with friends, make new friends, and always share in a joke.
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