OAAS News – Aylmer Fair

~ August 9th to 11th, 2024  

Celebrating Tradition and Community Spirit: The 176th Aylmer Fair

The Aylmer Fair, an institution steeped in tradition and community spirit, is set to dazzle attendees once again as it celebrates its 176th year from August 9th to August 11th, 2024. Nestled in the heart of Aylmer, Ontario, this annual event has become a cherished gathering for locals and visitors alike, showcasing the best of rural life, agriculture, and entertainment.

A Rich Heritage

Dating back to 1849, the Aylmer Fair has a rich heritage rooted in agricultural practices and community fellowship. What started as a modest exhibition of local livestock, produce, and crafts has evolved into a three-day extravaganza that attracts thousands of attendees each year. Despite its growth and evolution, the fair has maintained its focus on celebrating rural life and fostering connections among neighbors.

Welcome to the Aylmer Fair

A Showcase of Agriculture

At the core of the Aylmer Fair is its celebration of agriculture. From prize-winning livestock to bountiful harvests, the fair provides a platform for farmers and growers to showcase their hard work and dedication. Attendees can marvel at the beauty of meticulously groomed animals, admire the skill of competitive plowing matches, and sample the freshest produce from local farms. Agricultural education is also a key component, with demonstrations and exhibits aimed at highlighting the importance of farming and sustainability.

Entertainment for All Ages

Beyond agriculture, the Aylmer Fair offers a wide array of entertainment options for visitors of all ages. Thrilling midway rides and games provide excitement for the young and young at heart, while live music and performances showcase local talent and keep the atmosphere lively throughout the weekend. The fairgrounds come alive with the sights and sounds of bustling crowds, laughter, and joyous celebration.

Wreck ups

Culinary Delights

No fair experience would be complete without indulging in some delicious treats, and the Aylmer Fair delivers on this front as well. Food vendors line the pathways, offering everything from classic fair fare like cotton candy and funnel cakes to savory delights such as barbecue ribs and corn on the cob. Visitors can tantalize their taste buds with a wide variety of culinary delights, ensuring that there’s something to satisfy every craving.

Community Connections

Above all, the Aylmer Fair is a celebration of community spirit and camaraderie. It’s a time for neighbors to come together, reconnect, and forge new friendships. Whether it’s catching up with old acquaintances, participating in friendly competitions, or simply enjoying the company of loved ones, the fair fosters a sense of belonging and togetherness that is cherished by all who attend.

Looking Ahead

As the 176th Aylmer Fair approaches, anticipation is running high among residents and visitors alike. It’s a time to honor the traditions of the past while embracing the excitement of the future. With its winning combination of agriculture, entertainment, and community spirit, the Aylmer Fair promises to be a highlight of the summer season for years to come. So, mark your calendars, gather your loved ones, and get ready to experience the magic of the Aylmer Fair!

Getting ready for the tractor pull at the Aylmer Fair

History of Agricultural Fairs

Fairs are almost as old as recorded history. There were two types of ancient fairs: trade shows and festivals. From the biblical “Fairs of Tyre” to Sturbridge Fair in medieval England, fairs were used as market places and carnivals. In the 1700’s the British crossed the agricultural improvement society with the traditional trade fair/carnival and agricultural fairs were born.

These agricultural fairs were transplanted to the colonies by the earliest British settlers. The concept of fairs soon flourished in agrarian North America. In Canada, the first agricultural society was formed in 1765 in Nova Scotia. Ontario followed suit in 1792 with the Agricultural Society of Upper Canada based at Niagara on the Lake. From the Ontario strongholds, the concept of agricultural fairs spread west with the first settlers.

After a few false starts, the system of agricultural societies and their fairs spread all over Ontario in the 1800’s. They were organized by county and township and at one time numbered over 500 in Ontario alone. While agricultural societies used many methods (of varying success) to improve agriculture and the rural lifestyle, they’re most enduring and endearing legacy was the agricultural fair. Industrial exhibitions and festivals came and went, but the fairs just carried on. Fairs soon became an ingrained part of Ontario’s (and indeed Canada’s) culture. They still are, in our society.

Ontario Fairs have changed since their inception, but they still carry on their mandate of promoting agriculture and the rural lifestyle.

Want to see modern tradition meet the modern world? Attend a fair!

Click HERE to visit the Aylmer Fair