"I got first place, and it's sad it's got no competition by it. This is how bad it is," says Julie Lading pointing to her award winning flowers.
That competition is important for Julie Lading and her family. She and her kids battle each other for a blue ribbon showing flowers, pecans and other things.
"Last year I placed in a hanging basket competition. And it was gorgeous. Needless to say this year I wasn't even in that competition. We had a few things in the garden. It wasn't worth even trying to bring in. I know other people have to have the same decision," says Lading.
Entries are down 40%. Tom Jones has been fair president for six years and says its never been this bad.
"We were surprised it was down as much as what it has been because last year we had 1,200 entries and this year down to 700. So, you know that's 500 entries we don't have this year," says Jones.
Livestock entries are also down 10%. Jones says goats, cattle or pretty much any of the animals cost too much to feed. That's one reason why people aren't bringing them to show this year. Another reason is the heat.
"With the heat and everything, my kids are 4-H'rs. We've already lost several ducks that they've raised to show. We lost chickens, my daughter lost a rabbit," says Lading.
What isn't on the downturn? The part of the fair that doesn't need water.
"I think we will turn out and have a decent fair," says Jones.
However, for Lading, decent isn't good enough.
"It's really kind of heartbreaking," says Lading.
The Coles County Fair ends August 5th.