Fall fair makes comeback over Labour Day weekend

By Sam Odrowski

The 168th Orangeville Fall Fair returned over the Labour Day weekend (Sept 2-4), bringing a much-loved community event back to the region after a two year pause due to COVID-19.

A smaller-scale fair was held this year because of a tight budget and many of the midway rental companies as well as vendors going out of business during the pandemic. Although, Jen Arnold, Orangeville Agriculture Society (OAS) board member, said overall the fair was a success.

“It felt great to be able to hold a fair again. This is my 24th year of being part of the Orangeville Agricultural Fall Fair,” said Arnold. “Even though we did our best to build as much entertainment as possible, we were able to focus on the children, making the small-scale activities memorable.”

The midway was geared towards younger kids this year and other activities for the little ones included free face painting, Petunia the Clown’s balloon animals, a petting zoo, and farm animal rides.

While there was a lot of positive feedback that the fair was quainter and more child friendly this year, other attendees said there wasn’t enough for older children, and the Saturday entertainment should be brought back, Arnold told the Citizen.

“We budgeted to bring as much bang for our buck as possible,” she said.

Despite the challenges this year, Arnold said she feels the fair committee did a great job giving the community a place to enjoy family time, hear live music, and enjoy some classic fair fun.

The attendance levels did ebb and flow over the three-day fair, according to Arnold, but there was a solid crowd overall, particularly for the special events.

“With a small budget, we weren’t able to add a lot of night entertainment, but we did see quite a crowd come out during the day as well as the truck and tractor pull evenings and the derby evenings,” Arnold told the Citizen. “We are very thankful for that.”

Going forward the OAS will be continuing fair improvements throughout the year with fundraisers. The OAS board is also looking for new members and community support.

“We appreciate everybody who did volunteer and wanted to help our [OAS] society with the Orangeville Fall Fair this year,” Arnold enthused.

“We thank everyone who donated money to help build our next year’s fair back up. We look forward to continuing to keep the future fairs family orientated and enrich the learning of farming and agriculture.”

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