Tommy Thompson

Former Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson shakes hands with attendees at the Elroy Fair June 23.

ELROY—The memory of Allan Thompson, father of former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson and former Tomah mayor and restaurant owner, the late Allan “Ed” Thompson, was honored at the Elroy Fair June 23.

Three cattle barns were replaced over the last year with one larger barn, which was named after Allan Thompson. Thompson was known as a major supporter of the Elroy Fair.

State Rep. Ed Brooks, R-Reedsburg, was in attendance at the dedication. He called the new barn a “wonderful addition” and voiced support for the mission of the Elroy Fair.

“It is important that we maintain our agriculture fairs and maintain the roots of our food,” Brooks said. “They say if you like freedom, thank a veteran, but if you like to eat, maybe thank a farmer.”

State Sen. Howard Marklein, R-Spring Green, agreed.

“Farming is still very, very important out here and, thank goodness, we’ve got beautiful facilities like this,” Marklein said.

Tommy Thompson was present at the event to witness the barn dedicated to his father’s memory and was a major sponsor to fund the new barn.

“I love this community and I love its people,” Thompson said. “My father, Allan Thompson, loved this fair… Elroy is one of the last remaining communities that has a fair.”

Allan Thompson owned a general store in Elroy and served on the Juneau County Board of Supervisors. Tommy Thompson reflected on his father’s willingness to use his vacation time to volunteer at the fair and his dedication to the tradition.

“I am honored to be here,” Thompson said. “I want to thank all the people who put this on; I want to thank all the contributors.”

The Elroy Fair celebrated its 121st installment from June 22 to June 24.

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Tomah Journal editor

Steve Rundio is editor of the Tomah Journal. Contact him at 608-374-7785.

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