By Dennis Richardson
Last week I wrote about football, addressing the question of whether we will have it or not and if we do, will it be on all levels or just some?
This time the local fairs are on my mind.
I heard from some fair officials that seven county fairs in Tennessee have cancelled. There may be more cancellations by this writing.
The county fair, state fair, mid-south fair and fairs like that are something that we look forward to each summer or fall.
Some counties do not hold fairs. If those fairs that still exist cancel that would be an historic event. I cannot remember our local fair being cancelled. I was not yet born during the WWII era so cannot speak for that period.
The local fair is where local farmers show off their produce, jellies, flowers, recipes, livestock and a myriad of other items. It seems as if there is a category for everyone. Local 4-H members sell the livestock they raised (often from birth) and use the money to further their educations or to recoup the price of their projects.
I have mixed emotions about a fair this year amid COVID-19.
On the positive side, people have been staying “safer at home” for so long that they may have developed “cabin fever” and need to get out and stir around among friends and neighbors. A fun event like the fair brings a sense of happiness, well-being, and normalcy, even healing to a community hurt by business closings and unemployment.
On the negative side, some may not get so excited about attending a fair when their finances are stretched or depleted.
I really like it when the fair arrives. For one, it gets us all out of the homes and offices. The fair provides an escape from reality and an education on what is being done by local agencies.
I enjoy the fair burgers and the homemade desserts at the food stands. Watching local cuties compete in the pageants is uplifting. Like a home football game, the fair is a gathering place for our community. It provides a time to relax and have fun.
While deciding to cancel the local fairs may be the best business decision it will be a big blow, but not a fatal one. It will be overcome just like all the other events that had to be cancelled.
That is my opinion. Stay tuned to the local newspaper for updates on this subject as well as others.
I hope that we can say “see ya at the fair.”
And, read the newspaper often. Subscribe to the print edition, the online version, or both for the best value and consistent delivery.
Dennis Richardson is the CEO of Magic Valley Publishing, Inc., which owns the Chester County Independent