Potential donor for Expo Expansion project exists

By Kelsey Kimbler - kkimbler@registerherald.com

EATON — There is a potential donor for the Preble County Expo Expansion Project who might be interested in having the building named after themself. During a commissioners meeting on Wednesday, Jan. 9, Pork Festival Coordinator Becky Henning asked the board how much this individual would have to donate to receive naming rights.

The board replied, they did not have a number set already and would have to come up with an answer.

The project is estimated to cost $900,000 to finish, but the fairgrounds already has $150,000 committed to the project. The involved parties are trying to raise the additional $750,000 to finish the project.

There has also been discussion on utilizing a loan — whether from a bank or the county’s general fund — so the project can begin before the fund are raised. In that instance, the loan will be paid back through donations to the project. Before the county is interested in seeking a bank note, they want to generate as much money as possible, so they do not have to take the full price out as a loan.

Commissioner Denise Robertson suggested the benefactor donate a set amount every year, but Commissioner Rodney Creech answered, he would rather see the money up front so they aren’t seeing as much interest in any potential loan.

The board asked Henning how committed the mystery donor is, to which she replied, “They are 100 percent committed, but the amount is not determined.”

She added, she is afraid if the amount is too high the donor might get scared off.

The commissioners noted, they would have an answer the next week, but would want a minimum of $250,000 for the naming of the building.

While on the subject, Commissioner Creech noted wanting to see all of the fairground buildings named, so they are generating income for the upkeep of the grounds. He suggested an event such as a “naming rights auction,” where Preble County businesses and individuals would bid to name various buildings on the fairgrounds.

Buildings like Bruner Arena and the Toney Building will be exempt, as they are already named.

By Kelsey Kimbler


Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH

Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH