The 2018 Clay County Fair — billed as “the world’s greatest county fair” and one of Iowa’s top tourist attractions — opened Saturday. Tens of thousands already have made their way onto the fairgrounds in Spencer. Judges this weekend selected “The Barnyard Burger” as the best new food.

“It’s a quarter pound pork tenderloin patty with cheese, a chicken patty with cheese, a third-pound burger patty with cheese. You have the choice of having jalapenos on it, mushrooms and sauteed onion,” said Lucas Cline, a member of the Spencer Jaycees.

Cline said the inspiration for the massive menu option came from his mother.

“She’d always say, ‘You know you’ve got to have the trifecta on Sunday morning with breakfast, so you’ve got to have something from a cow, something from a pig and something from a chicken,'” Cline said. “…So I decided, ‘Hey, let’s see if we can roll that into a burger,’ because we had all three of those prior, not on the same burger, out at the fair stand.”

This the 101st Clay County Fair. More than 335,000 people attended during its centennial year in 2017.

(By Matt McWilliams, KICD, Spencer)