2018 Convention Schedule

Banquet – Special Presentations 2018


for Outstanding Fair Secretary

about the Judy Basse Award...

Judy Basse was past Executive Secretary of the Tennessee Association of Fairs from 1980 to 1999.  She served a two-year term as president of the Federation of Fairs, and served on the International Association of Fairs and Exhibitor's board.  She was a past president of the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce Farmer's club and a member of the Downtown Kiwanis Club and also managed the TN State Fairgrounds a period of time.  She was also a very big supporter of 4-H.  Judy was a lady who was easy to work with, friendly and always remembered your name.  She was an asset to the Tennessee Association of Fairs.

Presented to Mrs. Sherry Shadden, Appalachian Fair

A little about Sherry Shadden (her introduction)

This years recipient has shown all qualities of an extremely dedicated person to the fair industry in performing all duties of a fair ground operation as Secretary and more for almost 45 years,  primarily the leg work required to keep things ongoing.  She knows the ag agents, department heads, big name entertainment agencies, bankers down to the color of ink pin required.  Additional duties required her to assist in the management of over 20 permanent buildings entertainment stages, motor sports facilities along with museums and wildlife facilities.  In making this operation run smoothly, additional requirements of her job was to make plats of all vendor spaces with paint and making sure they stayed within their lines, provide contracts, took care of all of the mailings, down to collecting the fees  along with all of the logistics to ensure the grounds ran successfully.  Please note that this all started in the pre-computer days.   This was back in the type writer days and short hand days, around 1974.  Also, some say this lady had at least two variations of short hand. Her fair life did not take away from her family.  She encouraged her children to be engaged in Fair activities consisting of showing sheep, 4-H baking contests as well as judging teams.  Although her busy schedule kept her busy, she would meet her children in the 4-H building to help set up educational exhibits.  Of course the children would take a nap waiting on their Mom to finish up her duties.  Although this lady now has a computer, she still says it will never take the place of her "IBM electric typewriter".  Her husband served as Secretary-Manager from 1987 until his untimely death in 2011.  The incoming Secretary -Manager was more than blessed to have a secretary with such a vast knowledge about the Fair operations.  It is with great pleasure that we present the Judy Basse Award to a lady that has the Buzz words of -"Family", "Heritage", "History", and "Community" , which is the HEART BEAT of the fair to:
Sherry Shadden of
Appalachian Regional Fair, Gray, Tennessee



Presented to Eddie Burch, Dickson County Fair

This award started in 1971 as a Memorial Award for Thornton Taylor, long-time member of the Lincoln County Fair and a State Legislator.  This award is provided by the Lincoln County Fair.  This is given each year to a person who is active and been involved with the Tennessee Association of Fair.


Presented to Mr. Eddie Burch, Dickson County Fair

The recipient of the Thorton Taylor Award has been a member of their local county fair for almost 30 years.  The recipient has been a part of the fair since childhood camping in the livestock barn all week with the prized family livestock.

This person has sold fair catalog ads, helped design the catalog, proofread the catalog, and distributed the catalog. Also, has been in charge of all the livestock shows at one time or another over the years and is still in charge of ordering all the ribbons, banners and awards to this day. In working in about every job there is on the grounds from taking up tickets at the gate to announcing the derby, tractor pulls, serving as Operations Manager over the last 20 years as well as seeing to the day to day operations year round due to the grounds being used for other events.  This person is very devoted to their fair and is normally the first on the grounds and the last to leave during fair week and the weeks leading up to the fair.

Serving on the Tennessee Department of Agriculture's Merit Award Committee for numerous years, visits to as many fairs as possible every season was and is one of his loves so as to see the improvements of the fairs and all of the friends that he has met in other county fairs. As a result of this involvement, this person was elected and  served as a TAF Director in 2010, 2011, and 2012. 

To go along with the dedication, this person is always there to assist with the convention.  Whether it be Ushering or just help doing some manual labor in order to get the convention up and running.  You can always count on this person.

OK, it's a HE,  which has a wife, one daughter, and one granddaughter which are active in their community with not only the fair, but with month long Cancer Drives each year, and attend the Walnut Street Church of Christ.  When people think of the county fair, well, just ask his 15 year old granddaughter and she’ll tell you today that the Dickson County Fair is her “Popa’s Fair”. With his dedication to the Tennessee Association Fairs and his fair's success, this year’s Thorton Taylor Award is presented to Eddie Burch of the Dickson County Fair.



P.G. Crooks Award
Present to Lisa Robinson

The gavel has been handed down year after year – It is a representation of the love the Crooks Family from Fentress County has for the TAF.  In memory of Mr. P.G. Crooks who was president of the TAF in 1948, later his son David Crooks received the honors of serving as president in 1983, he was active until his passing in 2010.  They were the first father and son to serve in this capacity.  This families love didn’t end there – PG’s daughter Ella Ree Johnson was active in the White County Fair.  David’s Widow Sue, has attended the TAF Convention since 1970. In 1975 she joined the Fairest of the Fair Committee and in 1980 she stepped into the position as Co-Chair of the Pageant.  She is also active in her home County of Fentress serving on the board of directors there. Agriculture, Fair’s and Family Traditions run strong in this family.

Presented to Lisa Robinson, of White County Fair