Demolition derbys, horse pulls, rides and greasy food. You know it’s fall in Ontario when the fall fair rolls into town.
Yesterday, we spent the day at the Coe Hill Fair, just south of Bancroft. Grace is a member of the Napanee 4H Goat Club and she was showing her goat, Cloud in the goat show.
The Coe Hill Fair was founded in 1882. Before automobiles, a special train came from Trenton to bring exhibitors and fair goers to the fairgrounds. Today, the Coe Hill train station sits on the fairgrounds.
You never know what you will find or who you will meet at a fall fair. As soon as we walked into the fairgrounds, we met friends Reg and Barb Watson. Reg regularly shows his poultry in the fairs north of Kingston. We watched the poultry judge lift each chicken out of its cage, feel its neck and feathers and measure its wingspan. Reg took first prize for his Silver Duck Wing and Rhode Island Red.
Walking towards the goat pens, we came across Leeloo the potbellied pig. Leeloo is a local celebrity with his own Facebook page along with pigmates Sparky and Eli. Sparky is the TELUS pig you see in commercials. Eli became famous when his owner adopted him and started an animal rescue facility outside of Guelph. Dave knew about Leeloo, Sparky and Eli after hearing an interview about them on the CBC.
After filling up on sausages (sorry Leeloo!), roast beef on a bun and french fries, we headed over to the goat show ring. The judge had just flown in the night before from Ohio. This guy knew his goats.
While judging the milkers, at one point he said, “This goat has a good mammory system, well attached with lateral support.” I asked Dave if I had a good mammory system, well attached with lateral support. He didn’t answer me.
We were the only spectators in the stands for most of the show. You should have seen us do the wave.
In the end, Grace took second prize for showmanship and a bunch of fourth place finishes in the confirmation judging, which is more about the size and shape of the goat.
We toured the exhibit barns of quilts, flower arrangements, photography exhibits and all the usual homemade delectables of pies, jams and vegetables. We listened to live music in the grandstand and watched the horse and cow shows. We barely saw Clare who spent the entire day riding the carnival rides.
It was a good day.
This week’s #HappyAct is to take in a fall fair. Here are some upcoming fall fairs in Ontario. You can find a full listing here.
- Centreville Fair, Sep 2-3
- Georgetown, Sep 9-10
- Kingston, Sep 15-18
- Norwood Fall Fair, Oct 8-10th—I haven’t been to this one, but our friend Keith tells us it’s the best little fair in Ontario
- And the granddaddy of them all, the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair in Toronto, Nov 4-13. Grace will be going to the Royal this year, showing her goat Cloud on the Sunday.