Mark your calendar for August 17-19 and attend the 160th anniversary of the Stirling Agricultural Fair!
Judging from the fondness in Colin Crowe’s voice when he speaks about this event, it is quite evident just how securely rooted the fair is within the area’s agricultural community. Crowe himself has a life-long association with the fair — first, as a child tagging along while his father (who worked in a local Stirling feed-mill) walked him through the midway; to maturing into a two-decade professional association with the Stirling Agricultural Society. Now, into his second year as the Society’s president, he shares with other participants a genuine love of farming. Today Crowe, along with his family live on their hobby farm in Frankford, where he raises ponies.
When asked what he finds most enjoyable about the Stirling Agricultural Society’s involvement with the fair, Crowe says that it is his role in assisting with the organization of these fairs that allows for opportunities to “work together to put back into the community our rural roots.” It’s the friendships within the community that he respects the most.
With this being the 160th anniversary Crowe notes that the organizers focused on striving “to keep to our roots. To give to our children the fun we remember having at the fair as kids. Today many people don’t know where their food (meat) comes from, so this year’s fair has an emphasis on education, rather than competition. This year’s fair offers more displays and education. We want to recreate fun rather than competition. But, there are still a number of fun competitive events as well. We have something for everyone.”
Gates open Friday night at 5pm, with a concert, featuring Dan Davidson at 6pm. An adult beer tent, food and midway are available. Prior to the concert there is a steer auction, with proceeds from the sale of the animal going toward funding the Student Bursary (which is an annual award offered to Agricultural Students). Crowe mentions that this year two students will receive the bursary.
Among this year’s roster is the return of the Blacksmith Show, and a new Mini-horse Chuck-wagon event. There is a strong-man competition that will run over two days. Crowe explains that while the midway is provided by Homeniuk Rides Inc., these other exhibits are self-run, with an emphasis on family fun. The line-up features many traditional standards such as the Beef, Goat and 4-H Shows, the Big Daddy Derby (an old-fashioned derby, where guys and gals, smash their car wrecks for prize money), Homecrafts, Horse & Pony Pulls (Crowe’s particular favourite), and the Truck & Tractor Pulls. There is even a Petting Zoo for the young and young-at-heart.
On Sunday people can watch Sheep Shearing and attend the Gated Horse Show, which is going to feature specialty breed horses, fast high step, Icelandic horses, Tennessee Walkers, (10 to 12 horses) all on display to promote their breeds.
Crowe wants to offer a special thank you to all of the volunteers who make the fair possible. “We couldn’t do it without them.” This year he said that the fair organizers also were able to welcome the sponsorship of the BMO Bank in Stirling, Cool 100 and Molson Brewery.
For more information www.stirlingfair.com
Friday Admission to the grounds includes concert – $20.00 at gate or $15.00 in advance … 8 and under free
Saturday Admission is $8.00 for Adults, 9 to 12 years of age is $2.00, 8 and under free
Sunday Admission is $5.00 for Adults, 9 to 12 years of age is $2.00, 8 and under free
Weekend Pass $25.00
Advance Ride bracelet Tickets – being sold on behalf of Homeniuk Rides Inc. – $35.00 or can be purchased at ticket booth for $45.00 during the fair.