A great Geauga tradition

Labor Day weekend has special significance for Geauga County and surrounding communities. It’s time for the annual Great Geauga County Fair. This is the 197th year for the event taking place at the county fairgrounds in Burton.

There is something magical about this weekend, when families go out for the five-day event, starting today with 13,000 exhibits, 2,000 animals, drag racing, tractor pulls, concerts at the Main Grandstand and the smell of fair foods wafting throughout the grounds.

Fair Board Secretary Paul Harris is so right when he says that the fair has something for everyone.

We anticipate with excitement some of the smaller events like the racing pigs, chicken-flying contest and frog-jumping contest. Mr. Harris confided that the most asked question fair organizers get is: Where are those racing pigs?

Did we mention the rides? They by far are the best.

We also look forward to a traditional mainstay of the fair – seeing the 4-Hers show off the animals they have raised over the past several months, as well as the ingenious scientific projects that some have built.

The fair dates back to 1823 when the Geauga County Agricultural and Manufacturing Society was formed. Members set out to showcase new agricultural products and innovations to help farmers. It started that year with the Fair & Cattle Show in Chardon. Fairs in the early days alternated between Chardon, Burton and at least one year in Painesville, before it became Lake County. Since the mid-1800s, the fair has been in Burton after the permanent site was established.

The Great Geauga County Fair is a proud tradition for everyone. So, go out to the fair and have some fun. It is truly the grand finale of the summer season.

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