"" Writer's Wanderings: It was a FAIR day

Monday, September 01, 2008

It was a FAIR day

This past Saturday, we took advantage of beautiful late summer weather and ventured out to one of the many county fairs held in Ohio, the Geauga County Fair. This fair is one of the largest and certainly oldest fairs not only in Ohio but in the nation. It dates back to 1823 and has been held yearly ever since despite the Civil War, the Spanish American War, the Great Depression, two World Wars, and the more modern conflicts after them.

While that first fair was called "Fair and Cattle Show" and prizes were handed out for the best bull and heifer, there were also prizes handed out for fabric arts. Since the mid-1800s the fair has been held in Burton--equally well-known for hosting the maple festival in early spring.

The fair has certainly grown and offers exhibits for every kind of farm animal imaginable including llamas and alpacas. We strolled through the produce building and admired the beautiful harvests and stood amazed at the size of the large gourds and pumpkins. The largest pumpkin was just under 1200 pounds. Buildings (some listed on the historical register) held fabric arts, crafts, antiques, flowers, paintings, photographs, homemade bakery. I'll stop there as the image makes my mouth water. We just missed the apple pie auction.

This is what makes living in the Midwest so great and Ohio especially. While the Ohio State fair is huge, the county fairs bring more focus on local areas and add to community.

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