Hall of Fame
Hall of Fame Inductees
Judy Parker and Dave Wilcox, represent the eighth class to the Lake County Fair Hall of Fame. They will be inducted at the Belcher Pavilion on July 25th, opening night of the 2017 Lake County Fair, immediately following the fair parade.
Judy (Giantonio) Parker was introduced to fairs and festivals as a child. Judy’s father, the late Ed Giantonio, supplied fresh vegetables and ice to a customer base of traveling food concessionaires in Northeast, Ohio for several years. Judy worked for many of those same concessionaires on evenings and weekends to supplement her day job and to help with the financial challenges of raising her three daughters. Ed eventually became a concessionaire himself concentrating on the sale of Lemonade and Italian Sausage. Judy was there to help her dad at every turn. Judy did in deed develop a love of fairs at a very young age.
Judy and Dick Parker knew each other in grade school and were reunited in the late 1980s, began dating, and were married in 1989. Since that time, they have shared their love for each other and their love of fairs together. With Judy by his side, Dick Parker has been recognized as an outstanding fair supporter by many organizations over many years. In 1992, Judy commenced her own storied fair legacy when she was instrumental in starting the Lake County Fair Ladies Auxiliary. She has been the only president the auxiliary has known in its 25 year history. Under Judy’s leadership the Ladies Auxiliary has made countless contributions to the fair and fairgrounds and to the 4-H and Jr. Fair educational programs hosted there. Some of the major accomplishments that have taken place under Judy’s leadership include the construction of multiple picnic pavilions with tables, a substantial financial contribution to the East-end Restroom and Shower Facility, construction of two new grandstand ticket booths, the purchase of an ATM, the acquisition of Miss Lake Cownty, the replacement of several overhead doors, the purchase and installation of new super jet hand dryers and baby changing stations for fairgrounds restrooms, payment of the foundation for a new handicapped bleachers, multiple fixture purchases for the fairgrounds lighting improvement program and landscaping, furniture, window treatments and appliances for the new fair office.
There is an old saying: “Behind every good man, there is a good woman.” In Lake County, we have coined the saying: “Behind a good fair board and every good fair, there is a good ladies auxiliary.” Judy Parker has been at the leadership point of that effort for 25 years and counting.
Dave Wilcox has been a dedicated member of the Lake County Fair Board for twenty-seven years representing the City of Kirtland where he has lived his entire life. Dave has earned a reputation as a steady and dependable director having served on a number of committees over his tenure including Culinary-Farm and Garden, Draft Horse, Grounds and Livestock. Dave has shown exceptional leadership in managing the fair’s Agriculture Building over the past twenty plus years. He has never been afraid to make changes to his department as the Lake County Community has changed. His ability to innovate led to new competitive exhibits in homemade and commercial wine making and more recently the home brewing of beer, ale, stout and lager. He established the Supreme Baker Award and the Master Gardener Award in honor of the late Art Warren who had managed the Agriculture building for forty years before turning it over to Mr. Wilcox. He established a Freestanding Scarecrow class as a means to keep young people interested in farm and garden. When money became tight, Dave revamped the annual Baked Goods Auction and moved it to the opening evening of the fair where it flourished and became one of the fair’s fastest growing revenue streams. The auction provides revenue that makes the Farm and Garden Department self-sufficient and helped to fund new overhead doors and windows for the Agriculture Building.
Dave’s community involvement goes well beyond the fair board. He is a third generation farmer in Kirtland who is about to pass his farm down to his fourth generation son David Jr. Dave continues to be actively involved in the Lake County Farm Bureau where he has served for over 20 years and was instrumental in getting the equine industry more involved in the local bureau. Dave has driven bus for his alma mater, the Kirtland Local Schools, for over 40 years. He has served on the Friday Night Chain Gang for twenty-five years and is considered an integral part of Kirtland’s perennial state championship football program. David Wilcox brings his own amazing style of innovation and hard work to every challenge he undertakes.
The purpose of the Lake County Fair Hall of Fame is to recognize individuals who have made special contributions to the success of the Lake County Fair. “These individuals made a long term impact on the Fair and the Lake County Community” said Hall of Fame Chairman Robert Dawson. “They have been Great Friends of the Fair and we continue to be inspired by their achievements.”
Lake County Fair Hall of Fame
Members listed by year of Induction
Jerome T. Osborne
Robert C. Sidley
John “Doc” Kroh
Jack and Betty Burbach
Robert J. Dawson
Fred and Bette Anderson