FARMINGTON — San Juan County prepared for the upcoming fair with a parade on Friday night.

The fair starts Aug. 11 at the San Juan County Fairgrounds at McGee Park and will continue through Aug. 16. The theme for the fair, which will celebrate its 130th anniversary, is "Reflections: Celebrating 130 Years."

Toward the front of the parade, Tyler Cole, 8, and his mother, Tasha Miller, walked in brightly-colored clown costumes. Tyler and his mother have been participating in the parade as a family since he was six months old, and it has become a tradition.

Miller said she was in 4-H as a child and was eager to get her son involved in the fair.

"I figured the clown was the best thing for him," she said.

The San Juan County Sheriff’s Posse walks down Main Street on Friday during the San Juan County Fair Parade in downtown Farmington.
The San Juan County Sheriff's Posse walks down Main Street on Friday during the San Juan County Fair Parade in downtown Farmington. (Alexa Rogals/The Daily Times)

In their first parade, Miller pulled Tyler around in a wagon while he was dressed like a pirate. Their costumes and floats have changed each year. One year, Tyler remembers riding a tricycle and pulling a small float, and last year, he walked his dachshund.

This year, Tyler walked his Great Dane, Zeus. He said Zeus, who he has owned for a little more than a year, was his "favorite birthday present I ever had."

Tyler also plans on participating in the fair.

"He loves to bake," Miller said, prompting Tyler to brag that he makes famous nachos.

A short distance behind Tyler and his mother, the Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution rode down Main Street in a carriage pulled by a large, black Percheron mare. The mare belongs to the niece of Doug Smith, a member of the Sons of the American Revolution, and he provided the carriage.

"Our focus is on freedom and patriotism, and we want to see our country maintain them," Smith said.

He said the group participates in parades throughout the county and has been in the San Juan County Fair Parade for three or four years. This year's theme played a role in their float choice. In addition to the carriage and horse, the four members who rode on the float were dressed in colonial clothes.

"It's just kind of fun to get out, and everyone enjoys seeing the old modes of transportation," Smith said.

Neela Soce, 7, of Farmington, grabs Frisbees on Friday during the San Juan County Fair Parade in downtown Farmington.
Neela Soce, 7, of Farmington, grabs Frisbees on Friday during the San Juan County Fair Parade in downtown Farmington. (Alexa Rogals / The Daily Times)

Jo Minert joined him in the carriage. She said the parade provided the group a chance to remind spectators about the history of the United States.

"We feel it's important to let the children know about what our ancestors did and our history," she said.

The Country Rebels 4-H Club also donned old-fashioned clothes to walk down the parade route.

"We decided to dress like the fair was 130 years ago," said Rashel Korte, 15, a member of the club.

Hannah Grover covers news, arts and religion for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652 and hgrover@daily-times.com. Follow her @hmgrover on Twitter.