Audra D. Woody, Plaintiff and Appellant
Pembina County Annual Fair and Exhibition Association, Defendant and Appellee
from the District Court of Pembina County, Northeast Judicial
District, the Honorable John C. McClintock, Jr., Judge.
V. Omdahl (argued) and Clint D. Morgenstern (on brief), Grand
Forks, ND, for plaintiff and appellant.
L. Gaustad (argued), Ronald F. Fischer (on brief) and John A.
Olson (on brief), Grand Forks, ND, for defendant and
J. Crothers, Lisa Fair McEvers, Carol Ronning Kapsner, Gerald
W. VandeWalle, C.J. Opinion of the Court by Crothers,
Justice. Dale V. Sandstrom, concured in the result.
J. Crothers, Justice.
[¶1] Audra Woody appeals after a district
court granted summary judgment in favor of Pembina County
Annual Fair and Exhibition Association. Woody argues the
district court erred granting the Fair's motion for
summary judgment. We affirm.
[¶2] Woody attended a fireworks display at
the Pembina County Fair in Hamilton, N.D. The Fair is a
non-profit and taxexempt corporation under the laws of North
Dakota and the federal Internal Revenue Code. The Fair
offered a fireworks display to the public free of charge.
Woody did not pay a fee for entry onto the fairgrounds or for
any activity she engaged in at the fairgrounds. While looking
for a seat to watch the fireworks, Woody stepped on a rotten
board in the grandstand, fell to the ground and suffered
personal injuries. Woody sued the Fair alleging she sustained
serious bodily injury due to the Fair's negligence and
maintenance of the grandstand. The parties stipulated to the
facts of the case and the Fair moved to dismiss the
complaint, alleging no genuine issues of material fact
existed. The district court granted summary judgment for the
Fair, finding it was protected from liability by recreational
use immunity under N.D.C.C. ch. 53-08. Woody appeals.
[¶3] Woody argues the district court erred
granting summary judgment because it misapplied North
Dakota's recreational use immunity statutes. Woody
alleges the Fair was not entitled to immunity because the
Fair was engaged in commercial, rather than recreational
purposes. This Court's review of a summary judgment is
" In determining whether summary judgment was
appropriately granted, we must view the evidence in the light
most favorable to the party opposing the motion, and that
party will be given the benefit of all favorable inferences
which can reasonably be drawn from the record. On appeal,
this Court decides whether the information available to the
district court precluded the existence of a genuine issue of
material fact and entitled the moving party to judgment as a
matter of law. Whether the district court properly granted
summary judgment is a question of law which we review de novo
on the entire record."
Hamilton v. Woll,
2012 ND 238, ¶ 9, 823 N.W.2d 754
(quoting Wenco v. EOG Resources, Inc.,2012 ND 219,
¶ 8, 82 ...