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New Yolo County Fairgrounds CEO Press Release

Yolo County, California – 10/24/2023 – The 40th District Agricultural Association (DAA) is proud to announce the appointment of Sarah Pelle as the new Chief Executive Officer of the Yolo County Fairgrounds. Ms. Pelle brings a wealth of experience and a deep commitment to fostering community relationships. Ms. Pelle looks forward to leading the organization to new heights of success.

Ms. Pelle brings a rich background in policy development, organizational management, budgeting, and effective communication strategies, “Sarah Pelle is uniquely qualified to take the reins at the Yolo County Fairgrounds; the Board is excited to have her lead the Fairgrounds,” said the Board Chair Elaine Yamaguchi. Her prior role at the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) provided her with the essential skills to oversee the multifaceted responsibilities of the fairgrounds.

In her previous roles, Ms. Pelle has honed her negotiation skills, fostered fairs, and created transparent relationships with stakeholders to achieve common ground. Her experience managing projects and working with diverse groups has taught her the importance of trust-based relationships. As a forward-thinking strategist, she ensures that every decision considers immediate results and second and third-order effects, benefiting the organization in the long term.

Ms. Pelle's proven leadership in supervising and developing teams emphasizes her belief in building a strong and empowered workforce. Open communication, team development, and continuous process improvement are central tenets of her management philosophy, ensuring that the Yolo County Fairgrounds will thrive as a collaborative and successful entity.

In her current role at CDFA, Fairs and Expositions Branch, Sarah Pelle manages various responsibilities, including contracts, hiring processes, emergency management practices, and legal liaison. This experience has allowed her to work closely with fair board members, oversee day-to-day administrative operations, manage budgets, and successfully lead various projects. Her dedication to the Network of California Fairgrounds goes beyond professional interests, as she understands these institutions' profound impact on local communities. Raised in Tulare County, with deep roots in agriculture. Ms. Pelle has firsthand experience of California fairgrounds and their significance to the community.Ms. Pelle participated as a youth in the Porterville and Tulare County Fairs, participating in 4-H and FFA.“I look forward to my children participating at their local fair and carrying on a long family tradition,” said Pelle.

Sarah Pelle's appointment as CEO of the Yolo County Fairgrounds marks a return to her roots, as her family has deep historical ties to the Woodland area. She views this position as an opportunity to give back to the community that has given her so much. Her past experiences at the state level, including her education at UC Davis, demonstrate her readiness for the role, making her the ideal candidate to lead the 40th DAA/Yolo County Fairgrounds to a prosperous and vibrant future.

Ms. Pelle's passion for fairgrounds extends beyond the annual fair, as she recognizes their year-round value, from rentals to emergency services and community gatherings. She looks forward to working with the board to maximize the fairgrounds' potential and secure the necessary funds to maintain and enhance this vital public asset.

Ms. Pelle's appointment as CEO reflects the board's confidence in her skills and experience, and she is eager to lead the Yolo County Fairgrounds into a bright future. The Yolo County Fairgrounds is poised for a new era of growth and community engagement under Ms. Pelle's capable leadership. Ms. Pelle’s first day will be November 16th.

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About Yolo County Fairgrounds:

The Yolo County Fairgrounds, nestled in the heart of Yolo County, serves as a cherished and vibrant hub for the local community. With a rich history dating back to 1936, the fairgrounds have been a place of tradition and celebration for generations. Beyond hosting the annual Yolo County Fair, the fairgrounds play a pivotal role in the community's year-round activities. From hosting events, concerts, and gatherings to providing essential emergency services and a thriving RV park, the fairgrounds are a versatile and cherished asset for residents and visitors alike. The appointment of Sarah Pelle as CEO represents a commitment to preserving and enhancing this vital public space, ensuring that it continues to be a source of community togetherness, a proactive emergency response site, and economic vitality for Yolo County. Under her leadership, the fairgrounds are poised for a promising future of growth, innovation, and community engagement.

Introducing Sarah Pelle as the New CEO of the Yolo County Fairgrounds

Prohibited Items - Yolo County Fair

  • 1 Water bottle per person is allowed MUST BE SEALED.
  • There is no size limit.
  • Homemade snacks are allowed for smaller children and those with medical needs.
  • No other outside food or beverages are allowed.
  • No alcohol of any kind
  • No animals except service animals
  • No bootleg merchandise
  • No cans or glass bottles
  • No sticks or poles
  • No coolers or ice chests
  • No fireworks, horns, noisemakers etc.
  • No paraphernalia or street drugs of any kind
  • No handcuffs, spikes or tire chains
  • No knives of any kind
  • No weapons or guns of any kind
  • No tasers or pepper spray
  • No drones
  • No pamphlet passing out
  • No firearms allowed, except full-time law enforcement officers with proper ID
  • No bicycles, skateboards, roller blades, scooters or hover boards
--The Yolo County Fair is a smoke free event --

Metal Detectors & Turnstiles Coming to Fair

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