Board discusses public input on fair move

The Auglaize County Agricultural Society, or Fair Board, memberes again discussed the possibility of moving the county fair to June.

Traditionally, the fair has been held the last week on July, though a change in the date is not unprecedented. However, moving it into June would be the earliest date the fair has started.

Auglaize County Fairgrounds Secretary Fred Piehl said the discussion during Monday’s Fair Board meeting does not center on board members trying to push through or a move that they are actively seeking.

He said it is simply a discussion.

“We are simply seeking input from the public and discussing the pros and cons of it,” Piehl said. “There has been a lot of concern and questions asked. People need to know this is something that wouldn’t go into effect until 2015 at the earliest.”

Piehl said the idea was mentioned briefly to board members several months ago, and then was brought up again at the November meeting.

Piehl said they have received plenty of feedback from the public, both pro and con.

Some of the more popular reasons from people supporting a move have included nicer weather with many feeling the weather is not as hot. Others also have said they like the idea of having the fair sooner and getting it done earlier.

 Also, the fair is traditionally the same week as the Ohio State Fair, and many parents who have children who show at both fairs spend the week traveling back in forth between both fairs.

Piehl said those in support of the move feel they would have more of the summer left to do other things.

People not in favor of moving the dates of fair told board members that the move may interfere with summer activities the children are already involved in over the summer. They also felt the move may be too close to kids getting out of school for the summer, leaving less time to spend on fair projects. Others said it would interfere with summer recreational sports.

“There have been a lot of good reasons to move the fair, and been many reasons not too that have been brought up,” Piehl said. “We are not saying it is something we want to do at this point. We are just trying to get the idea out there.”

Piehl encouraged anyone to contact a Fair Board member and let them know what their feelings are on the issue.

The move would also cut down competition with other fairs, as 12 other county fairs in the state are also going on at the same time. Piehl said there are only a handful of fairs going on in June.