[Nameplate] Overcast ~ 64°F  
High: 67°F ~ Low: 49°F
Thursday, Apr. 28, 2016

The Milk Barn leaves its mark at the Putnam County Fair

Friday, July 29, 2011

Milk Barn Manager Virgil Arnold stands next to his post at the Putnam County Farm Bureau Milk Barn. Arnold has been serving Putnam County fair-goers milk for 20 years.
For many, the Putnam County Fair is as much about tradition as it is showing livestock and other various projects. Many of us can't go through a fair week without getting our Legionburgers. Another tradition for many is stopping by the Putnam County Farm Bureau Milk Barn, or to fair-goers, just simply the Milk Barn.

Located between the Producers building and Legionburger stand, the Milk Barn has become a Putnam County Fair icon, serving thousands through the years. Almost as much of an icon is the Milk Barn Manager Virgil Arnold. Along with other volunteers that mainly consist of members of the Putnam County Farm Bureau, Arnold helps to keep fair-goers hydrated through the hot week.

From what Arnold has been told, milk used to be sold at Harris Hall and then the Industrial Tent for 5 cents a cup. The actual Milk Barn was constructed around 40 years ago. The Milk Barn has been in its present location for as long as Arnold can remember.

Arnold took over as Milk Barn manager in 1990, and has held the position ever since. "My job is to basically open and close it," Arnold said. "I try to open around 8 a.m. and close it around 10 p.m."

The milk is purchased from Prairie Farms as well as the coolers and milk dispensers. Each morning, workers from Prairie Farms check the coolers and refill what is needed.

Customers have their choice of white and chocolate milk, but it's pretty obvious which is favored by most fair-goers.

"Oh, we definitely sell more chocolate," Arnold laughed. "Everyone wants the chocolate."

Chocolate milk is such a favorite that the milk dispenser has four chocolate milk dispensers as opposed to only two white.

When asked why he's worked the Milk Barn for so many years and continues to do so, Arnold said, "Well, it does wear on you sometimes, but I enjoy meeting the different people. I've even seen two generations of people that I've served. People will bring up their children and tell them that that's where they used to buy milk when they were their age."

Arnold says that he plans to continue working the Milk Barn as long he's able, or unless they find someone else to take the position.

Note: The nature of the Internet makes it impractical for our staff to review every comment. If you feel that a comment is offensive, please Login or Create an account first, and then you will be able to flag a comment as objectionable. Please also note that those who post comments on bannergraphic.com may do so using a screen name, which may or may not reflect a website user's actual name. Readers should be careful not to assign comments to real people who may have names similar to screen names. Refrain from obscenity in your comments, and to keep discussions civil, don't say anything in a way your grandmother would be ashamed to read.

Thanks for doing your community such a great service. What a great way to give back all those year.

-- Posted by nascar_Couple on Fri, Jul 29, 2011, at 5:57 AM

The milk was great on those hot days of fair. Thank You for your services Mr. Arnold.

-- Posted by familygirl on Fri, Jul 29, 2011, at 2:23 PM

Nothing better than 4 legionburgers and large glass of chocolate milk. I lived on that when I was in 4-H in the 80's. Cleans you right out.

-- Posted by Redneck_Geek on Fri, Jul 29, 2011, at 3:21 PM

I look forward to getting a chocolate milk every year!! I have been doing that for over 40 yrs. Glad to see at least some things don't change at the fair!! Keep it up and thank you!

-- Posted by sad_but_true on Fri, Jul 29, 2011, at 10:09 PM

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: