Cloudy skies did not dampen the enthusiasm of the crowd of adults and children gathered in Athletic Park for Saturday's turtle races.
One of the many events that drew people to the Harvey County Fair this year, the contest was held on a basketball court with competitors holding their turtles inside a circle outlined in chalk. At the signal, the turtles were let loose to race for the edge of a wider chalk circle, roughly six feet from the inner circle.
The turtles were divided into land and water turtle race divisions and five heats were held to determine which turtles would move on to the final round. Size did not seem to matter, as the winning turtles were not always the larger specimens.
The Roth family, with daughters Holly, Jenny and Wendy, said they had brought larger turtles to the races last year, but that they had stayed in their shells. This year, the girls changed up their strategy and brought turtles only a few inched in diameter, found at their family farm.
Noting that the turtles always seemed eager to be on the move whenever they were given a chance, the Roths figured they would be perfect to enter in the turtle races. It was a strategy that would net Holly Roth a second place finish in the water turtle category.
First place — Grant and Carter Julius
Second place — Holly Roth
First place — Taysley Cowan
Second place — Jasperson and Emma Herwig
The Harvey County Fair is open at Athletic Park (800 W. 1st St., Newton) through Aug. 9. For more information on events and vendors, visit harveycountyfair.org