Bayfield Fair – 168 Years Strong

Of all the communal events that have contributed to our national identity over the years, the agricultural fair is undoubtedly one of Canada’s longest running and most cherished traditions. While the idea of a fair celebrating regional food and farms was originally brought to Canada by European settlers, the concept resonated right away in Ontario’s many agricultural communities. When settlers began to move westward, they brought the spirit of the fair with them. Fairs even predate the formation of Canada in 1867- the first one happened way back in 1765! 

Long before this disparate collection of territories officially congealed into one great, unwieldy nation, the local fair had already been woven into the seasonal social fabric of many small agrarian communities. A number of those early, pre-confederation fairs are still being put on to this day, including the Bayfield Community Fair, which turns 168 this year. 

While most agricultural fairs happen either in the spring, to celebrate the end of winter, or in the fall, to celebrate the harvest, Bayfield’s fest will be happening from Aug 16 to 18 – a wise move for Huron County’s cutest summertime tourist destination. This year’s fair theme is “Farms, Food & Family” – a welcome reminder of what these fairs are all about. While Bayfield’s fair will certainly be offering up an excellent and exciting weekend full of family friendly games, music, and other enjoyable bits of entertainment, the true purpose of any agricultural fair is to take a moment to celebrate our hard working farmers, and to appreciate the fertile land that feeds us all.

Another essential element of any agricultural fair is the Homecraft Competition. If you’re a fan of a little friendly competition, or just feel like showing off some of your skills, you’ll probably enjoy entering something in the Homecraft Competition. There are so many categories to choose from that you’re basically guaranteed to find one that appeals to your competitive spirit. There are prizes for the winners, but the real prize is knowing that your tomato has officially been declared ‘Best in Show’. Physical copies of the 2024 Bayfield Fair Book can be found around  town, and there’s also a digital version on Bayfield’s Fair’s website, so get your hands on a copy and get started on your entry! 1 Fry St, Bayfield, ON

Article reproduced with permission from North Huron Publishing (Stops Along the Way, Summer 2024 Issue)

Categories: News