OAAS News – Lansdowne Fair

~ July 18th & 21st, 2024 ~ 

The 160th Lansdowne Fair promises to be a jubilant celebration of community spirit, tradition, and fun-filled festivities. Set against the picturesque backdrop of Lansdowne, a quaint town steeped in history and nestled amidst rolling hills, this year’s fair pays homage to its remarkable legacy with the theme “Hats Off to 160 Years.”

As fairgoers step onto the grounds, they are greeted by a kaleidoscope of colors, sounds, and aromas that instantly ignite the senses. From the bustling Lansdowne Fair midway adorned with twinkling lights and exhilarating rides to the vibrant array of food vendors offering delectable treats ranging from classic funnel cakes to gourmet delicacies, there’s something to delight every palate.

Wagon at the Lansdowne Fair

The heart of the Lansdowne Fair beats with the rhythm of live music performances featuring local talents and renowned artists, filling the air with melodies that beckon visitors to dance and sing along. Amidst the lively entertainment, guests can wander through the artisanal stalls showcasing handcrafted treasures, from intricate jewelry to whimsical sculptures, providing the perfect opportunity to find unique souvenirs or gifts.

For the young and young at heart, the fair boasts an enchanting lineup of activities and attractions. Children squeal with delight as they explore the petting zoo, marvel at mesmerizing magic shows, and partake in interactive games and competitions. Meanwhile, adults can indulge in friendly competitions at the agricultural exhibits, marvel at the skillful displays of local craftsmen, or simply unwind in the tranquil oasis of the beer garden.

Barrel racing

At the heart of the Lansdowne Fair lies a deep-rooted sense of community, where neighbors come together to celebrate shared heritage and create cherished memories. Whether it’s reconnecting with old friends, savoring timeless traditions, or embracing the thrill of new experiences, the fair serves as a beacon of unity and joy for all who attend.

As the sun sets on another unforgettable day at the Lansdowne Fair, guests depart with hats tipped in appreciation for 160 years of cherished memories, eagerly awaiting the next chapter in this storied tradition.

Midway at the Lansdowne 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 Lansdowne Fair website.