Raising Funds for The Future Of Your Nebraska State Fair!

About Us

Established in 1989, the Nebraska State Fair 1868 Foundation is dedicated to the growth and support of the Nebraska State Fair. The purpose of the Nebraska State Fair 1868 Foundation is to raise funds for the overall improvement of the Nebraska State Fair. We are a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.

Since 2010, The 1868 Foundation has raised over 2.7 million in funds for improvements that the fair needed to continue to grow.

Join the Nebraska State Fair 1868 Foundation and continue the winning tradition of education, competition and celebration. Young or old, Nebraskans have gained from their State Fair experiences and have used new knowledge, skills, talents, and creativity throughout their lives!

1868 Foundation Board of Directors

The 1868 Foundation Board of Directors is a volunteer board comprised of:

Terry T. Galloway - Chairman
Jay Vavricek - Vice-Chairman
Bill Oltean - Secretary/Treasurer

Dustin Beener
Eddie Biwer
Jill Staab
Steve Wehrbein
Tom Middleton


Lindsey Koepke

Executive Director

Lindsey Koepke has been the executive director of the 1868 Foundation since 2007. She is passionate about helping you create your own legacy with your Nebraska State Fair.

P: 402-432-1393
E: lkoepke@statefair.org

Nebraska State Fair 1868 Foundation

Heidi Davis

1868 Foundation Assistant

Heidi Davis and her family have deep roots in the history of the Nebraska State Fair. Heidi has been a part-time employee for the foundation for two years and absolutely loves all things Nebraska State Fair and the 1868 Foundation!

E: 1868_assistant@statefair.org

Past Projects

Since 2010

Over $100,000 worth of park benches, lamp posts, directional signs and concrete pavers have been funded thru the 1868 Foundation and given to the fair. You too can leave your legacy with the fair by sponsoring a park bench, a Tree or paver today!


In just a few short months in the spring of 2013, the 1868 Foundation was able to successfully raise $135,000 to air-condition the Fonner Concourse, home to thousands of Open Class exhibits each year.


State Fair Volunteer Program


We know our volunteers are the heart and soul of the state fair. That is why each year, the 1868 Foundation contributes $5500 towards the volunteer program. We are grateful to have such incredible people selflessly give their time to the fair.


Volunteer Recognition Tribute


The Volunteer Recognition Tribute was funded by: Principal Financial Group, George & Donna Wanitschke Family, Wortman Enterprises, Jayne Mann Smith & Denny Smith and the Nebraska State Fair.


Thompson Foods Open Air Arena

Our largest fundraising effort to date was the construction of the Thompson Foods Open Air Arena. This 60,000sq ft arena is one of the finest in the state. It is projects like this that make us proud to be a part of the exponential growth of the Nebraska State Fair.


Growing Nana’s Garden! Installation of A beautiful garden and landscape feature established to celebrate and honor Donna Wanitschke for her love of her Nebraska State Fair!