Friday, August 2nd, 2019
A native of Tulsa, OK, Diffie is a member of the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame and has been a member of the Grand Ole Opry for 25 years. A star athlete in high school, he originally set his sights on a medical career, but his love for music won out and he began performing in a gospel group. He paid the bills by working in a foundry and later joined a bluegrass band before deciding to give Nashville a try. He got a job working in the warehouse at Gibson Guitars, but felt like he wasn’t any closer to making his dreams come true.
He was on the verge of moving home when a conversation with his dad changed his destiny. “The best advice I ever got was from my dad,” Diffie recalls with a smile. “He said, ‘If you don’t have a goal, you don’t have anything to shoot at. Do something every day towards your music. Write a song or play your guitar.’ I took that to heart and made sure I did something every day whether it was big or little. I remember getting out of bed one time because I had forgotten to do something towards my music. I actually got up, got my guitar and played for a few minutes and then went back to bed. I feel like that had something to do with the success that I’ve managed to achieve. I think it would apply in anything. I lived, breathed, ate and slept music all the time. I was so obsessed with it.”
That passion and dedication to his dream paid off. His first break came when Holly Dunn recorded “There Goes My Heart Again” and asked him to sing harmony. “I remember going to the mailbox one time and getting the first check from that song and was like, holy crap! I need to write some more songs! I hadn’t seen that much money in my whole life,” he laughs.
By 1990, Diffie had signed with Epic Records and released his debut album A Thousand Winding Roads. His very first single, “Home,” hit No. 1. He continued to dominate the charts throughout the 90s with such hits as “New Way (To Light Up an Old Flame),” “If the Devil Danced (In Empty Pockets),” “Is It Cold in Here,” “Prop Me Up Beside the Jukebox (If I Die),” “So Help Me Girl,” “Bigger than the Beatles” and “Third Rock from the Sun.” Jason Aldean paid tribute to Diffie and name-checked many of the veteran entertainer’s classics in his hit “1994.” The video featured Luke Bryan, Thomas Rhett, Little Big Town, Jake Owen and others paying homage to the man who influenced them.
“It was a nice shot in the arm and it’s amazing to me the impact that it’s had. A lot of fans are coming to my shows now to see who the dude is that Jason and Thomas are talking about,” Diffie says, noting that Thomas Rhett co-wrote the song and often plays it in his shows. “The really amazing thing is the fans know every song that I sing. We’ll go to a place and they’ll be a bunch of younger people and they’ll know every single word. Obviously, they’ve gone back and done some research or downloaded something. It’s pretty cool.”
Nevertheless, Diffie has trouble seeing himself as an elder statement because he’s just as active as ever. Most recently Diffie has teamed with producer Phil O’Donnell a.k.a. “Phillbilly” to craft I Got This. “Phil’s very inventive and is such a pleasure to work with. He has some unique ideas. He’s kind of laid back like me.” Diffie says. “He did a great job.”
With nearly 30 years in the spotlight, Diffie has no plans to slow down. “I love music. It’s just a part of me,” he says. “Retiring would be like cutting off my arm or something. I enjoy everything about it. The travel part gets old once in a while admittedly, but I love the fans. It beats working any day.”
Monday, July 22nd – Pre-Fair Clean up night – 6:30 pm
Monday, July 29th – Pre-Fair Clean up night – 6:30 pm
Tuesday, July 30th
– 4-H/FFA & Open Class dog show. All released after judging – 9:00 am
– 4-H/FFA & Open Class cat show. All released after judging – 10:30 am
– 4-H/FFA & Open Class small pet show. All released after judging – 1:00 pm
– Open Class Entry – Exhibit Building, North Door – 1:00 pm – 6:00 pm
– Ag Olympics – 7:00 pm @ Livestock Building
Wednesday, July 31st
– Open Class Entry – Exhibit Building, North Door – 8:00 am – 11:00 am
– 4-H/FFA Judging of entries – 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
– Open Class Judging of entries – 1:00 pm – 6:00 pm
– Team Penning – 7:30 pm @ Horse Arena
Thursday, August 1st
– 4-H/FFA & Open Class Dairy Shows (Milking dairy cows released after show) – 1:00 pm
– 4-H/FFA Horse Show (Trail, Timed Events, Ground Roping & Working Stock) – 1:00 pm
– Exhibit Building Open – 1:00 pm – 10:30 pm
– Livestock Judging Contest – 5:30 pm
– Extreme Bull Riding – Double S Bulls – 7:30 pm – Sweet & Salty in the Beer Garden
Friday, August 2nd
– 4-H/FFA Horse Show (Judged Events, Except Working Stock) – 8:30 am
– 4-H/FFA & Open Class Rabbit shows – 8:30 am
– Exhibit Building Open – 9:00 am – 10:30 pm
– 4-H/FFA Poultry Show – 11:30 am
– Small Animal Round Robin Contest (to follow Rabbit show) – 4:00 pm
– 4-H/FFA & Open Class Goat show – 5:00 pm
– 4-H/FFA & Open Class Sheep show immediately after Goat show – 5:00 pm
– Joe Diffie in Concert – 8:00 pm – Backroad Spirits in the Beer Garden
Saturday, August 3rd
– 4-H/FFA & Open Class Swine show – 8:00 am
– Exhibit Building Open – 9:00 am – 10:30 pm
– 4-H/FFA & Open Class Beef show refer to show schedule for order. Large Animal Round Robin Showmanship Contest to be held immediately following Beef show. Large Animals (Beef, Sheep, Swine, Dairy, Horse & Goat) – 10:00 am
– Horseshoe Pitching Contest (East of tennis courts) – 1:30 pm
– Premium Auction – 4:00 pm
– Antelope County Barbeque @ Riverside Park – Sponsored by Neligh Chamber of Commerce – 4:30 pm
– Pie & Ice Cream Social @ Riverside Park – 4:30 pm
– Antique Tractor Parade @ Riverside Park – 5:00 pm
– Demolition Derby – 7:00 pm – Jessy Karr Band in the Beer Garden
Sunday, August 4th
– Pancake Feed – 4-H & FFA exhibitors free @ Riverside Park – Sponsored by Two Rivers Irrigation/Carquest – 7:30 am – 10:30 am
– Exhibit Building Open – 9:00 am – 4:00 pm
– Open Horse Fun Day @ Arena – 10:00 am
– 4-H Fashion Revue & Awards Ceremony – 12:30 pm
– All exhibits released & must be picked up and out of Exhibit Building by 4:00 pm. The Fair Board will not be responsible for any items not picked up during release time – 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
– MATTPA Truck and Tractor Pull – 5:00 pm – Beer Garden Open
– Round Robin Roping – 5:00 pm @ Horse Arena
NOTE: All barns must be cleaned – wood chips and manure must be placed in designated areas.
Inflatable Games Midway Thursday, Friday, and Saturday
Open Class events are open to residents of Antelope County and any county that borders Antelope County EXCEPT for livestock entries. Only Antelope County residents can enter livestock.
All static entries must be entered between 1-6 PM on Tuesday, July 30, 2019 or 8-11 AM on Wednesday, July 31, 2019 using the north door of the Exhibit Building. Livestock are entered between 8 AM-Noon on Thursday August 1, 2019. An exhibitor may enter only one (1) entry per class number. All exhibitors must fill out their own exhibitor tags prior to entry day. Tags can be picked up at the Extension Office in the basement of the courthouse or from the Open Class Superintendents, Alice Morrison @ (402) 843-8321 or Judy Zegers @ (402) 843-5865.
Open Class events follow the 4H/FFA events.
Exhibits are released on Sunday between 2-4 PM. The board will not be responsible for any items not picked up during release time.
Pee Wee Showmanship is open to children 4-8 years old as of January 1, 2019 and will be allowed to show animals at the discretion of the Superintendent.
All exhibit tags must show the age of the exhibitor.
Ag Olympics – Registration begins at 6:30 pm. Contact Ed Pellatz at (402) 929-3046 for details or for early registration.
Mutton Bustin’ – Registration Form
Round Robin Roping – Contact Paul Rudloff at (402) 929-0480 to participate.
Team Penning – Contact Kenny Oelsligle (402) 860-0582 to sign up or for early registration.
Competition begins at 7:30 pm.; Limited to first 40 teams registering. Entry fee is $60 per team.
* Each person can ride on three teams but each ride has to have at least one different person.
2018 TRACTOR PULL RESULTS
Duane Pfister – One Piece at a Time – 295.80 ft
Bob Pommier – Farmall M – 292.32 ft
Duane Pfister – 1468 – 290.17 ft
Darin Priest – Rudolf – 278.19 ft
Bob Pommier – Massey 44 – 270.16 ft
Pro Stock 4×4
Dave Wenske – Big Red Express – 295.91 ft
Chris Bouc – Screamin’ Bohemian – 293.09 ft
Branden Walling – What Next – 265.86 ft
Bronson Gibbons – Razz Ma Tazz – 259.82 ft
Randy Slifer – Just Right – 310.75 ft
Mark Gibbons – Tude Truck – 279.42 ft
Paula Bouc – Bohemian Outlaw – 267.34 ft
3.0 Diesel Trucks
TW Vasa – The Max Effect – 310.80 ft
John Kraspar – Mad Max – 308.24 ft
Shawn Ferichs – Killin’ Time – 339.46 ft
Luke Renter – Running Wild – 330.87 ft
Aaron Dekkers – Ragin’ Red – 325.08 ft
Gerald Tomka – Just Layen Around – 308.60 ft
Dick Douglas – Redneck Special – 284.75 ft
Mitch Tomka – Tomka Toy – 283.67 ft
Pam Slifer – UpWanted – 241.29 ft
Alex Chapa – Blood, Sweat and Beers – DQ-293.70 ft
Keith Keaschall – Die Hard Deere – 342.64 ft
Nate Bottjen – Unknown Binder – 323.14 ft
Paul Kremlacek – Boondock Binder – 313.92 ft
Tiger Bradley – Double Trouble – 106.06 ft
Mel Nelson – Born Loser Lite – 302.76 ft
Tyler Spotanski – Super 10 – 299.03 ft
Tyler Spotanski – Centsless – 275.79 ft
2018 AG OLYMPICS
4-6 Years Old
Asher Kurpgeweit and Brecken Hoefer
Jenna and Kaleb Kallhoff
Hannah Elder and Jayden Sauser
7-12 Years Old
Chase Thomas and Callan Zegers
MaKenna Boggs and Maddoz Zegers
Kate Furstenau and Heather Johnson
13-18 Years Old
Josey Booth and Emma Boggs
Ashton Higgins and Talon Krebs
Natalie Johnson and Dylan Furstenau
19 and Over
Bethany and Bud Miller
Krystal King and Kara Johnson
Randy Reinke and Tom Krause
TEAM PENNING 2018 RESULTS
Phillip Wright, Don Schmitz and Patrick Mahoney 1:35:89
Bob Frey, Don Schmitz and Jon Mazour 2:23:39
Tammi Nervig, Don Schmitz and Phillip Wright 2:02:87
Harold Fischer, Steve Skibinski 2:31:77
Macy Zentner, Bailey Lehr and Ashleigh Nelson 1:20:34
Macy Zentner, Brooke Lehr and Ashleigh Nelson 1:52:60
Macy Zentner, Bailey Lehr and Brook Lehr 1:56:09
ROUND ROBIN ROPING
Paul Rudloff , header; Trey Baum heeler
Darin Wickersham, header; and Dave Mast, heelers
Ryan Ahlers, headers; Lynn Rader, heelers
No. 3 Headers
No. 3 Heelers
2018 DEMO DERBY
Vendors may contact Stephanie Hoffman at (402) 929-0208.
Food Vendors may contact Jeff Carr at (402) 929-0326.