Chuckwagon tarp sales down 26 per cent

First-ever Dawson Creek sale saves association travel costs, but tough times take toll

Chuckwagon tarp sales for the Dawson Creek Fall Fair are down by a quarter this year, according to new data from the exhibition association. 

The association auctioned off $141,5000 in sponsorship rights at its annual sale Tuesday—down 26.59 per cent from the year before. 

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On the night of the auction, exhibition association President Connie Patterson estimated sales were off ten per cent.   

While the final sale was lower, the association opted not to hold the annual tarp auction in Grande Prairie for the first time, which ultimately saved on travel costs.

Earlier, Patterson had worried the slowdown in the oilfield could lead to big drop in tarp sales. In the worst case, the exhibition association could have had to buy drivers who failed to net more than the minimum bid of $2,500.

Instead, the association had to buy only two tarps, while only four out of 36 failed to top $2,500.

The top seller was John Walters, who went to Fort St. John's Arrow Insurance Agency for $6,500.

This year's average bid was $3,930.56.

Around 80 per cent of tarp auction proceeds go to the driver, with the balance paid to local rodeo.

How'd they do?

A look at tarp sale prices for a few key drivers on the World Professional Chuckwagon Association circuit.

Rick Fraser (2015 finish: 4th)

2013: $10,000

2014: $7,000

2015: $4,000

2016: $3,250 (VJV Dawson Creek Auction)

Jason Glass (2015 finish: 7th)

2013: $20,500

2014: $20,500

2015: $3,500

2016: $6,000 (Glass Racing)

Kirk Sutherland (2015 finish: 2nd)

2013: $9,000

2014: $6,000

2015: $8,000

2016: $3,750 (Celtic Construction)

Kurt Bensmiller (2015 finish: World Champion)

2013: $3,750

2014: $4,500

2015: $5,000

2016: $5,000 (Tsuu T'ina Nation)

Cody Ridsdale (2015 finish: 24th)

2013: $5,000

2014: $7,500

2015: $4,500

2016: $5,000 (DND Electric)

Logan Gorst (2015 finish: 16th)

2013: $5,000

2014: $3,000

2015: $2,750

2016: $4,000 (Red Oak Rentals)

Kelly Sutherland (2015 finish: 9th)

2013: $21,000 (Top Seller) 

2014: $10,000

2015: $10,000

2016: $5,500 (Friends of the King)

reporter@dcdn.ca

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