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High turnout for opening weekend

Attendees of the 2018 Wilson County Fair are greeted by hundreds of sunflowers.

The Wilson County Fair opened in Lebanon on Friday and had significantly more attendees than last year.

Fair officials said they had a great, smooth weekend, with nearly 168,000 attending over the weekend. That is almost 11,700 more than last year’s opening weekend.

Officials also said the new carnival, supported by Reithoffer Shows, was a huge addition to this year’s Fair.

Wilson County Promotions also presented Mike Marks with the 2018 Mike Baker Friend and Supporter of the Fair Award on Tuesday, Aug. 21 prior to the Great Give-A-Way at the Wilson County Fair.

The annual award recognizes business professionals in Wilson County who have gone above and beyond in their support of the annual Fair and service to the community. The award is given in memory of Mike Baker, longtime chairman of the Fair’s Great Give-A-Way Committee.

Mike Marks is a lifelong resident of Wilson County, graduating from Lebanon High School in 1979.  He married Cindy Rowland that same year and the couple have two children, Josh and Amber. Mike has been a member of Immanuel Baptist Church in Lebanon for more than 37 years.

He served in management positions at Lux Clock, Hartman Luggage and Lee Al Co in Lebanon the early part of his career. From 1992 to 2006, he worked for his father-in-law, Mr. Donald Rowland in the John Deere business, when he began his career with Tri-Green Equipment in Mt. Juliet serving as Sales Manager.

TriGreen Equipment provides customers more than quality equipment. With 21 locations throughout Tennessee, Alabama and Mississippi and a team of more than 400 employees, they strive to provide customers with a positive experience. They offer an extensive selection of John Deere equipment, plus Honda Power Equipment, STIHL Power Tools, non-stop support, genuine parts and more.

The year 2018 marks the 100th anniversary of the John Deere tractor.  While the John Deere company was founded in 1837 as a manufacturer of agricultural tools like shovels and pitchforks, its business grew to include plows, planters and cultivators before pivoting to the tractor business in 1918. When asked about John Deere, Marks says “Reliability–Customers need a tractor they can trust to get the job done. 100 years of John Deere speaks for itself.

TriGreen Equipment has always been a major supporter of the Wilson County Fair. The organization provides Gators for the events, including the Great Give-A-Way, tractors for the trolleys and arena events, a farm equipment display near fiddlers grove as well as their financial support. Mike’s father-in-law, Donald Rowland received the Mike Baker Award at the Wilson County Fair in 2009 because of the support Rowland Implement provided to the fair.

This tradition of support continues under the leadership of Mike Marks at TriGreen Equipment in Mt. Juliet today.

The 2018 Wilson County Fair is running from Aug. 17 through Aug. 25. Gates open at 5 p.m. during the week and will open at 10 a.m. on Saturday.

To view a list of events and exhibits, visit the fair website at

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