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New Boss for Miss. Valley Fairgrounds

Miss. Valley Fairgrounds

A long-time employee of the Mississippi Valley Fairgrounds in Davenport will be the next general manager. Following a nationwide search, directors decided to promote maintenance manager Shawn Loter to succeed Bob Fox who's retiring.

Fair board president Mike Vondran says they chose Loter because of his love for the fair.

"This is a man who's served in various capacities at the fairgrounds since he was a teenager. I think he started hanging out there when he was 14. And he has a real passion for the venue, the events, and for the fair itself."

Loter first joined the maintenance staff in 1989 - 27 years ago - and was promoted to maintenance manager in 2006.

Vondran says it's a complicated job - the fair runs for 6 days every summer and attracts nearly 350,000 people, but the property hosts a variety of other events all year long.

"It's a complete operation that requires a skill set that's pretty broad. You have to be solid operationally. You have to be able to work with the public. And you also have to do crisis management - when you put that many people in one place, you're bound to have a problem pop up now and then."

Bob Fox will officially retire at the end of the year, after 21 years as general manager, but stay on as a consultant through next summer.