The Colorado State Fair has a new general manager this year. Scott Stoller was appointed by the Colorado Department of Agriculture, and started his new role at the beginning of July. Stoller comes from the Silver Dollar Fair in Chico, California where he managed all aspects of the fair. 91.5 KRCC’s Abigail Beckman sat down with him to discuss his new job.
On his role in the 2018 Colorado State Fair:
A majority of the planning is complete so, at this point, it's just the implementation of all of the planning. It gives me a huge opportunity to learn my first year. Things have been planned out [in the same way] that they have been for the last 12 or 15 years, so I get to see that first hand. It's a pretty unique opportunity that I greatly appreciate.
On his career path toward becoming the general manager of the Colorado State Fair:
I grew up in a small rural county in California. My family raised livestock, so at a young age I was very involved in showing and competing at the county fair. As I advanced into the college level, I learned about fair management opportunities. I took a course at Chico State and through that I was afforded an opportunity to do an internship. It was a really enjoyable internship and I stuck with it. [I] did a lot of internships in college that related around fairs and post-college I did a lot of odd jobs here-and-there at different fairs throughout the state of California.
On his biggest challenge in this new role:
The biggest challenge that's been identified to me is growth of the year-round use of the facility. The other 50 weeks of the year, the fairgrounds is [still] there. There are different groups that utilize it, but it's an area for growth. We're going through a process right now of trying to grow that and be more to the community.
On what he's most excited about:
I've been working at fairs as a manager for about 13 years now, and being at the helm of a state fair is the pinnacle for me. I'm very excited. I really believe that the state fair works with all of the county fairs in the state—it's supposed to be the pinnacle for an exhibitor or anybody who participates at the local level. I really want to be a part of the state fair working with all of the different communities.
The 2018 Colorado State Fair is August 24-Sept. 3. Details can be found here.