Actual rain and the threat of severe weather have been blamed for a drop in attendance at the Nebraska State Fair last week.

Heavy rain held down the Grand Island crowds at the beginning of the week, and then Sunday's forecast may have kept people home. Sunday's attendance was down 36 percent from last year's final Sunday. 

Threats of 2-inch hail, 70 mph wind and heavy rainfall on Sunday were topped by the forecast possibility of a tornado. Fair executive director Joe McDermott says it turned out that Grand Island had great weather on Sunday, but he thinks the forecast likely swayed people's decisions about attending the fair.