16 Sep 15

September 16, 2015


Weather whacks fair attendance

Candice Vetter

Villager Staff

RUSSELL—Two days of rain, which unfortunately occurred on Saturday and Sunday, hurt attendance at the Russell Fair noticeably, which disappointed organizers and the many volunteers who work for a whole year to prepare the Russell Agricultural Society’s main event. Fair board members reported good attendance on Friday, at the Friday evening concert, and at Saturday evening’s demolition derby.

Because of the forecast the large antique show was cancelled, with participation only from a few exhibitors who had already brought in their equipment. Other cancellations included horse shows on Saturday and Sunday, the cutting horse competition, the tractor pull, the flying trapeze artists and the Good Time Pullers.

Some shows including the Birds of Prey from the Canadian Raptor Conservancy and the sheepherding demonstration were moved into a tent, while Sunday’s outdoor entertainment was moved into the arena. Most of the time the rain was not particularly heavy and being on the fairgrounds was pleasant, and as a bonus for those who came out line-ups were short and the rides were long.

The Fair opened Wednesday night with a special ribbon-cutting ceremony honouring members of Russell’s 4-H clubs. 4-H in Ontario celebrates its 100th anniversary this year, and throughout the fair special tribute was paid to 4-H. The Shilo Horse Show on Friday evening was a big success, with over 90 entrants. Results of the cattle and sheep shows had not been received by press time, but they also had many participants.

Clowns, magicians, animals including heritage breeds, handcraft and culinary exhibits, crop and horticultural exhibits, vendors, a spectacular line-up of music, and tons of food rounded out the Fair.