Yakima Valley Fair & Rodeo Kicks Off

<p>Cow</p>

Cow

Hundreds of people flock to the Yakima Valley Fairgrounds for the annual Fair & Rodeo.

For some, it's a chance to get in touch with the valley's roots and culture, for others it's a long-time tradition.

"It's our neighbor's kids, our rotary member's kids who are putting animals into the barns and having them sold," said Joan Souders, "It's the small groups like the high school groups getting to come and put on a display."

It's the 86th annual Fair & Rodeo, one of the largest annual events held in the Lower Valley.

Last year, more than 3,500 people came through the gates - but this year, with good weather and additional vendors, expectations from organizers are running high.

Organizers are expecting over 4,000 people to visit the fair this weekend, shattering last year's numbers.

However, that expectation wasn't the same last week when the air was thick with smog from the fires in Satus Pass and Kittitas County.

"The smog is not going to have a huge effect on the animals, they're out in it all the time anyway," said livestock sales director Ryan Maiden, "We're more concerned about the spectators and the exhibitors that would be affected by it as far as allergies and stuff like that."

For locals, the more visitors, the merrier.

"[it's] For community comraderie, and to support each other and to work together as a team in supporting the City of Grandview," said Souders.

The Yakima Valley Fair & Rodeo runs from today through Saturday -- admission is $6 per adult, and $4 for students and seniors.

Gates open at 8 a-m every day