History

Orangeville Agricultural Society History

  • 1854-first reference to a fair being held in, or near, Orangeville
  • 1862-Mono Agricultural Society
  • 1863-1st annual Exhibition of the Mono Agricultural society held in Orangeville
  • 1876-first land purchased on the edge of Orangeville
  • 1903-more land purchased
  • 1912-teachers and students of townships were to be admitted free to the fair
  • 1913-land obtained for grandstand –approx cost $3500.
  • 1915-Scoiety joined the Canadian National Trotting Association
  • 1917-cattle stable proposed, to be 112’ in length
  • 1920- Dufferin Lacrosse Club desired to have the horse ring made suitable for playing lacrosse
  • 1938-stone pillars erected a the main entrance at Fifth Avenue and Second Street
  • 1940-joined the Ontario Fairs Association
  • 1930 Exhibit & Guild Hall built at a cost of $3000. Rented to Department of National Defense -$400. quarterly
  • 1949-new grandstand built 108’x40’-4’front elevation / 19’ rear elevation
  • 1952-record gate receipts set
  • 1957-ON Hereford Assoc Regional Show exhibited109 head by 17 breeders
  • 1957-Aberdeen Angus Regional Show recorded 126 entries in 26 classes
  • 1958-Centennial Year-interesting to note that the Centennial Fair was held in 1958, not 1954, as records show that the first fair was held in 1954
  • 1958-Centtenial Fair the most successful in history
  • 1958-agreement signed by the Orangeville Curling Club & the Orangeville Agricultural Society for and new building
  • 1959-new Agricultural Coliseum & Curling Centre constructed
  • 1960-Dufferin Agricultural Society named changed to Orangeville Agricultural Society
  • 1963-Bobby Hull opened the fair
  • 1966-fair date moved to Labour Day Weekend
  • 1969-lady directors invited to attend all director’s meetings
  • 1969-horse racing had been part of the fair since 1877 however, in this year a multi year lease was signed by the Society and Waples, Keeling & Gillespie, three long time trainers and racers. This allowed for for an annual income to increase prize money. Records indicate that, at future fairs, over 325 head of cattle were shown on a weekend as many breeders left the Canadian National Exhibition on Sunday and showed at Orangeville on Monday.
  • 1974-Grand Valley Agricultural Society requested a meeting with Shelburne and Orangeville Societies to keep communications between the three fair boards.
  • 1975-Wm. Ewing Road Race initiated to honour of of Dufferin County’s most famous athletes
  • 1982-125th year celebration dinner and dance 167 runners entered in Ewing Road Race Orangeville Raceway new owner. Ian Hardcastle, signs lease with Society
  • 1984-improvements made to the Coliseum
  • 1985-prize money paid out totalled $27,570
  • 1985-O.A.S. donates $5000 to Ontario Tornado Disaster Relief Fund
  • 1986-due to inter-track betting Woodbine & Greenwood the Raceway was in severe financial problems and so further expansion plans by the Society were put on hold
  • 1991-2004-over 180 meetings took place with regard to relocation
  • January 10, 1991 the fairgrounds in Orangeville were sold to Harlington Developments
  • June 1, 1992 the membership approved the purchase of the Duncan property in the Town of Mono
  • July 4, 1994, membership approved a new constitution which included the change to a board of directors of 18 persons Orangeville, Grand Valley & Shelburne societies donate $23,302 to the new hospital building fund
  • 1998-CFRB broadcast Mark Cullens gardening show from the fair the Orangeville Fairgrounds Facility have just gotten busier and busier ever since