The Nebraska State Fair is thanking its volunteers, and gearing up for another blue ribbon year.
Last year, around 900 volunteers put in about 12,000 hours at the fair. Some sign up for a single four-hour shift, others work multiple shifts every day.
Facility Director Jaime Parr said some fairs have "paid volunteers" and Nebraska's true volunteer program is envied by fairs across the country.
Event Director Chelsey Jungck said the volunteers continue to shine year after year, in their bright yellow shirts.
The volunteer effort is coordinated by the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce. Jungck said there are about 50 different volunteer jobs -- from barn greeters to Spanish interpreters.
New this year is a website where volunteers can sign up for shifts at http://statefairvolunteer.org.
At the volunteer kickoff, folks got to taste new fair treats, including "moinks."
Parr explained it's a combination of moo and oink -- a beef meatball wrapped in bacon. Fair staff said they appreciate volunteers and want to get them energized for another year.
Many volunteer as a family, others in groups. Terri Hongsermeier of Ravenna coordinates a group from Cabela's that comes every year.