BLUE EARTH - Larry and Myrna Prange are flattered, but don't understand why they have been chosen Faribault County Fair Persons of the Year for 2012.
The Pranges will be recognized today during the Farm and Fair Awards Program, beginning at 1 p.m. in The Tent.
"The (fair) board chose us and it was really an honor," said Myrna. "Other people chosen were special people and we're just plain ordinary folk."
Myrna and Larry Prange have been named the 2012 Fair Persons of the Year for all they do at the Faribault County Fair.
"Plain ordinary folk" who have pitched in and helped pretty much wherever needed for years.
The reason they do it is simple: "Because it's our county," Myrna said. "It's our people that come to this. It's our people who put on this fair."
The Pranges are the first to admit they get a lot of help.
"None of this would be possible without the (fair) board members and their spouses," Myrna said.
"A lot of volunteers," Larry said.
"That's this community," Myrna said. "The whole community helps the fair and (county) historical society."
The couple get help elsewhere too.
"Our family has to put up with a lot with us being gone so much," she added.
Son Alan farms with his folks. Daughter Jan and her husband, Mark Rauenhorst, live just down the road. Daughter Sue and her husband, Mike Hesse, live in Colorado Springs, Colo. There are six grandkids and two great-grandchildren.
The Pranges involvement with the fair all began with one question by Jim Schaper.
"Jim asked 'What does it take to get you to bring your tractors to the fair?'" Myrna recalled.
Larry, who still farms, started buying antique tractors a couple decades ago. He now owns 18.
And that question lit a match.
"The first year (1998), I brought 13 of them," Larry said.
"He kept bringing tractors and more people brought tractors and it grew, one year to the next," Myrna said.
This year, more than 50 tractors are on exhibit at the fair.
The antique tractors got the Pranges involved with the Faribault County Historical Society, and that has kept them busy.
"You name it; mostly with tractors," Myrna said when asked what they do at the fair. She calls herself Larry's "sidekick."
The couple are constantly on the move, helping out with the antique tractor show, which runs the length of the fair, and attending to the hundred-and-one things the historical society has going on at any one time.
The Pranges are involved with the tractor pull at 11 a.m. Saturday. They help organize the tractor parade, which begins at 5:30 p.m. today and 6 p.m. Friday.
Even when the fair isn't on, Larry works on historical society projects. In 2004, he helped move the church that now sits on the fairgrounds.
He also assisted fair board member Carl Carlson with building the general store that is now in use.