The dimly lighted areas around the food booths and lawns at the Spokane County Interstate Fair are becoming a lot brighter.
The Spokane County Fair & Expo Center has won a grant for the second year in a row to replace 30-year-old lighting with new fixtures that will brighten up the place, said fairground Director Rich Hartzell.
Spokane County commissioners on Tuesday approved a $50,000 grant from the state Department of Agriculture for the upgrades. The grants are given out annually to improve the health and safety of agricultural fairs around the state.
Hartzell said that the money will go to illuminate the north lawn area of the fairgrounds around the food booths and aisles. That will help fairgoers see what’s on their plates when they sit down at a picnic table to eat.
Last year, the fair and expo center received $35,000 to upgrade two of the walkways around the food booths with six new light arrays.
This year, it will install eight more light arrays in the same vicinity.
Hartzell said he hopes to extend the lighting project in the next two years with additional grants from the state. Improved lighting is also needed in the south lawn area, which is adjacent to the food booths. However, that additional lighting will depend on availability of the state grants.
“We’ll do our best to take advantage of it,” he said of the funding program.