HAMILTON, Ohio — After the 2020 Butler County Fair was shut down early due to concerns over the coronavirus pandemic, the 2021 fair is nearing the end of its first successful week, the financial impact of which can be felt all year long.
“My favorite part of the fair is probably the food,” attendee Rick Fornshell said. “That’s what we’re here for.”
Folks from all over the area come for the food, games, rides and, of course, the farm animals.
“We’re very excited,” Butler County Agricultural Society president Doug Turner said. “It appears most of the public has come back out, opened things back up.”
The 2021 fair has all the events, entertainment and activities that were absent from the event last year. Coronavirus concerns caused the 2020 fair to close to the general public and shut down a few days early.
“Last year, all we had was the Junior Fair Show and all we let happen was the exhibitors’ families come in,” Turner said.
Hurting from the lack of funds from the 2020 fair, the Butler County Agricultural Society relied on support from the county commissioners and a $50,000 grant from the state of Ohio to make it through a difficult year. Organizers said it's encouraging to see so many people out supporting the 2021.
“It’s huge because we have an event once a year and if we don’t have our event, we don’t have the money to keep our lights on and pay our bills,” Turner said. “We made it, and we’re doing well again, so this fair should help us a bunch.”
New to this year’s fair was a competition called “Animal and Me,” which allows children with special needs to get involved in showing animals.
Guests were impressed and said they think the fair is better than ever.
“It looks great,” Fornshell said. “I noticed the amount of rides here. This is more than I’ve seen in years, actually. I hope everyone is having a good time.”
The 2021 Butler County Fair has events on Friday, July 30, and Saturday, July 31, before wrapping up for the season.