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Safety Report Finds Structural Deficiencies in Cardinal Stadium

Editor’s Note: What this means for the Kentucky State Fair World’s Championship Horse Show is that all stabling under the grandstands and bleachers of Cardinal Stadium will be unavailable to show participants. Tents will return to the Kentucky State Fair stabling area to make up for this loss of stalls.

As a result of a new report on the condition of Cardinal Stadium at the Kentucky Exposition Center,  the Kentucky State Fair Board today announced plans to hold the Kentucky State Fair’s free concert series on the stadium field. 

Kentucky State Fair Board President and CEO Clifford “Rip” Rippetoe said that safety of fair attendees, concertgoers and employees is the primary concern. Citing deteriorating conditions at the 56-year old stadium, Rippetoe pointed to the recent inspection report in saying that he and fair officials have made the decision to move concertgoers out of the grandstand and onto the field in what he described as a more intimate environment.

 “We are moving forward to provide an even better concert experience in a safe and comfortable environment. The free concerts are a huge draw for the fair, and we intend to improve the setting and the excitement with this new configuration.”  

The inspection of Cardinal Stadium revealed continuing deterioration in the structure, with costly renovations and repairs needed to stabilize portions of the 19,000 seat venue. Rippetoe said that the board is looking at all options for the stadium, noting that the repairs would be cost prohibitive. 

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