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Zent retires from Fair Association

After about 14 years on the Stark County Fair Association, Bob Zent has decided it's time to resign. His resignation was official last week.

"He's going to be a loss to the Fair Board," said Fair Association President Kurt Froelich.

Zent said he decided to end his time with the Fair Association to be able to devote more of his energy to other activities.

"I'd like to spend more time with my deacon duties," Zent said, adding he is a deacon at St. Wenceslas Church in Dickinson.

He said he joined the Fair Board in 1994 because he was assigned to it when he was a Stark County commissioner. Zent stayed on with the Fair Association after he retired from the County Commission because he wanted to help make the proposed fairgrounds become a reality.

"It's kind of interesting to be on it for all that this time," Zent said. "I was able to watch it finally get some shape. For so many years it had no shape and no structure."

Froelich said Zent helped the association with many things, including securing the deed for the land the proposed fairgrounds project is to be constructed on. He also helped gather opinions from Stark County residents about the proposed fairgrounds.

"He was instrumental in those public input meetings we had a yr. ago," Froelich said.

Zent said he helped the Stark County Park Board in purchasing the land for the Southwest Speedway, as well.

"Motorsports were always a problem with having a fairground located within city limits," Zent said.

The Fair Association originally hoped to put the speedway on the land proposed for a fairgrounds, but many people disliked that idea. Keeping the Southwest Speedway outside of city limits helped clear up some bad feelings about the proposed fairgrounds, Zent said.

Zent was the treasurer for the Fair Association for two years, but Connie Monson was named treasurer Feb. 23, when Zent's resignation was official.

Though he is no longer on the association, Zent hopes the fairgrounds will eventually be developed.

"I think if people are patient and develop what we have, it should eventually come into a nice property," Zent said.

Due to Zent's resignation, there is now an opening on the Stark County Fair Association.

Froelich said the only requirements are time to devote to the association and a desire for the proposed project to succeed.

Those interested in joining can contact any member of the association. To contact Froelich, call 701-456-7665.