Absent from the Nebraska State Fair no more -- the popular Game and Parks attraction will return.
The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission is a key player in the fair's $5.4 million expansion.
By all accounts, the new Nebraska State Fair's been a big hit. Attendance continues to climb and ratings are off the charts.
And as much as people enjoy the experience, many have said something's missing.
Fair Board President Jana Kruger said, "Once people got over the aspect of these huge buildings, started looking around and saying, ‘where is Game and Parks? We need them here.' So we are thrilled to say today they're coming back."
Game and Parks plans to bring back its popular aquarium. They also plan to have archery and target shooting exhibits.
On Friday, the fair unveiled plans for what it calls the "Nebraska Building", which will have space for these new attractions.
Jim Douglas, head of Game and Parks said they missed being part of the fair, but weren't sure how to get involved until this opportunity arose.
"Actually wondering how and when are we going to get to have that kind of presence and interaction with citizens again," he said.
The new building measures 120 feet wide by 450 feet long. There will be a total of 54,000 square feet of exhibition space on the main level, plus 10,800 square feet of offices for the fair's headquarters.
Governor Dave Heineman praised the news in a statement to NTV.
He said, "The State Fair has seen giant successes in the last five years. This new building is the direct reflection of the strong interest, the continued enthusiasm and the hard work that goes into making the State Fair in Grand Island a success. Congratulations are due to those working to make this a reality."