Ossipee Valley Fair
A Brief History of the Fair:
"Ossipee Valley Fair" opened its gates for the first time on July 10, 1980. That year, it was popularly referred to as the "miracle fair." Our land was purchased in the spring of 1980, touching off a remarkable mad dash to clear brush, lay out roadways and erect enough buildings to form the nucleus of a fairground. Most years we still have that "mad dash" feeling as fair time approaches - so little time - so much to do! Nevertheless, it's important to pause once in a while to reflect on how we got hee-ah from they-ah. On May 7, 1977, a group of 24 local citizens signed a charter organizing the Ossipee Valley Agricultural Society (OVAS). They had been inspired by the revival of the Cornish Fair for the town's bicentennial in 1976. The purpose of the Society is "to instruct the people of the Ossipee River Valley in the State of Maine on agricultural matters and other concerns of rural living by holding public fairs, demonstrations, and exhibitions of livestock, poultry, farm produce, rural arts and crafts, and rural industry." OVAS continued to operate the Cornish Fair on its historic fairgrounds through 1979. As the need for space increased, an alternative site was acquired on nearby South Hiram Road. That first fair on the new land was a very dusty affair - and we still grow rocks as well as we grow anything else - but we've observed marked and steady improvement on these grounds in the subsequent 25 years! More to the point, Ossipee Valley Fair continues to be a place where the rich traditions of farming and rural life are celebrated and honored. For four days each July, the fair is a non-stop beehive of activity - 4-H events, horse and cattle pulling, musical entertainment, an exciting and colorful midway, a myriad of tasty foods, games, goats, sheep, rabbits, cows, chickens, pigs, steers and oxen - even 4X4 racing for the gear-heads among us! Most of all, an agricultural fair is "good folks." We are an all-volunteer endeavor - and we've been blessed with great volunteers! As we salute the spirit and foresight of the Society's Charter Members, we also acknowledge the creativity and energy of today's members - carrying us forward to bigger and better things at "The Friendliest of Fairs" - Ossipee Valley Fair.
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