SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WICS/WRSP) -- Governor JB Pritzker's Inauguration in Springfield pulled $1.6 million in ticket sales.
John Slayton paid $250 for a ticket.
"Our Governor and Mrs. Pritzker paid for all of the events," Slayton said.
Slayton, the Chairman of the Illinois State Fairgrounds Foundation, was shocked when Governor Pritzker called him directly to commit $800,000 to the foundation. The money will come from the ticket sales netted at the Governor's Inaugural celebrations.
"Every building out there has a need," Slayton said, referring to the state fairgrounds. "There are roofs on half of the buildings that require attention."
As of now, repairing the Coliseum is top priority. It has been closed for repair for almost three years as big horse shows are leaving Springfield for other cities.
"The dairy building has tarps on it right now," Slayton said. "The livestock center has a leak on it."
Governor Bruce Rauner secured $30 million for the fairgrounds in the state budget last year. Most of the money will be used to repair the Coliseum, but millions are still needed to give the entire fairgrounds new life.
Slayton said he's hopeful momentum will continue.
"I think momentum brings interest and I am optimistic that we're heading in the right direction," Slayton said.