OAAS News – Emo Fair (Rainy River Valley)

~ August 15th to 17th, 2024  

Embracing Tradition and Fun: Emo Fall Fair 2024

In the heart of the Rainy River Valley, the Emo Fair, hosted by the Rainy River Valley Agricultural Society, is set to enchant visitors from August 15th to August 17th, 2024. Nestled amidst the picturesque landscapes of Emo, Ontario, this annual event promises a delightful blend of tradition, community spirit, and wholesome entertainment for all ages.

At its core, the Emo Fair celebrates the rich agricultural heritage of the region while offering a plethora of activities to engage and entertain attendees. From livestock exhibitions showcasing the finest breeds nurtured by local farmers to horticultural displays boasting vibrant blooms and lush produce, the fairgrounds transform into a colorful tapestry of rural life.

Welcome to the Emo Fair

One of the highlights of the fair is the lively competitions that bring out the competitive spirit in participants and spectators alike. Whether it’s the exhilarating tractor pulls, the precision of the horse shows, or the agility of the sheepdog trials, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. For those with a green thumb, the gardening contests provide an opportunity to showcase their skills and creativity, while baking and canning competitions offer a taste of homemade goodness.

But the Emo Fair isn’t just about competitions; it’s also a celebration of community and camaraderie. Throughout the three-day event, visitors can explore artisanal craft stalls, indulge in delectable fair food, and enjoy live music performances that echo through the air. The fairgrounds buzz with laughter and excitement as families come together to create cherished memories.


For the younger fairgoers, there’s no shortage of entertainment. From carnival rides that whirl and twirl to interactive educational exhibits, the Emo Fair ensures that children are kept entertained and engaged throughout the event. Pony rides, petting zoos, and face painting stations add to the festive atmosphere, fostering a sense of wonder and joy.

As the sun sets on the final day of the Emo Fair, attendees depart with hearts full of fond memories and a renewed appreciation for rural life. With its time-honored traditions and modern attractions, this beloved event continues to uphold its legacy as a beacon of community spirit and wholesome fun in the Rainy River Valley.

Line up at the Emo 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 Emo Fair