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A Rainforest Adventure
Local artists design exotic fair experience
A miniature scale model of the Stanislaus County Fair rainforest exhibit shows what the giant mushrooms, water features, and over-sized insects will look like once the exhibit is completed. - photo by ANDREA GOODWIN / The Journal
Clayton and Elaine Everett will spend the next two months constructing giant mushrooms, massive trees, and a colossal butterfly. These structures will be part of a rainforest exhibit that the Everetts designed for the 2009 Stanislaus County Fair.
The fabricated ecosystem will include water features and live animals for fair-goers to observe. There will also be naturalists and interpreters on site to explain how plants, animals, and the environment depend on each other for survival. The rainforest exhibit was chosen to compliment this year’s fair theme, “renewable fun.”
The Everetts put in a bid to create the exhibit in November 2008, and their rainforest design was chosen. The exhibit is complete with a bridge, animal enclosures, and a children’s theater area. The Everetts also designed replica dinosaurs for the “Jurassic Journey” exhibit at the 2008 Stanislaus County Fair.
Clayton Everett is the light designer and technical director for the California State University, Stanislaus Theater Department. He and his team are constructing the rainforest exhibit one piece at a time in the set workshop at CSU Stanislaus. Everett said he had his co-designer Elaine, along with his brother-in-law and a handful of other family members, helping out with the construction. He said they are considering hiring a few students from the university to help out with set building, since the project will take a lot of manpower to complete on time.
“The fair opens July 31, so it will be there by the first day,” Clayton Everett said.
The completed exhibit will be 8,000 square feet and include a canopy cover, said Pennie Rorex, director of communications for the Stanislaus County Fair.  Daily live animal shows inside the exhibit are included in the price of admission to the fair.
To contact Andrea Goodwin, e-mail or call 634-9141 ext. 2003.