1868 Foundation at Nebraska State Fair

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GRAND ISLAND, Neb. -- Fair attendees know vendors bring the rides and the food, but they usually don't know who provides the benches or makes the fair possible.

Wednesday is 1868 Foundation Day at the fair, which serves as the main fundraising arm for the state fair. That means every time a souvenir is purchased, the buyer is helping to make the state fair possible.

The 1868 Foundation's mission is to continually improve the fair. Whether it's supporting volunteers by donating to the volunteer tribute or making sure fair attendees are comfortable inside the Fonner concourse.

"We brought in a full HVA system, we made it a much cooler place to be. We have members, we have donors that not only donate their money to make the state fair a better place, but they're out here volunteering," said Lindsey Koepke, the executive director of the 1868 Foundation.

The chairman says having a day dedicated to the foundation, helps people become familiar with their purpose.

"We feel our awareness is our key today. Just to let everyone know what the 1968 Foundation is all about and how they can get involved," said Jayne Mann the chairman.

Ron Wiese has been involved with the 1868 Foundation for four years. He says he couldn't imagine his money going to a better place.

"We enjoy doing it and I know it's going to a good place. I mean, look at our Nebraska Building and you know, what all that's going on around here. More new events all the time," said Wiese.

Other donors from the foundation said they love seeing a packed day at the fair.