Longest running school fair is bigger than ever



 No fair is complete without a pipe band

Students, teachers, parents & grandparents turned out for the 89th annual fair

Wall of art by children surrounded the community centre

The Belgrave-Blyth-Brussels student agricultural fair is one of the longest, if not the longest, running fair of its kind in Canada.

For 89 years, the fair has brought not only the students together from the three communities but also their parents and grandparents. Many of those two earlier generations spoke with fond memories of their participation in the parade, the livestock displays and various games that have not changed in three generations.

President Tim Walden spoke of the importance of a fair that draws families together. "This fall fair is the chance to celebrate the four seasons and the bounty that each offers and also gives our children the opportunity to build their identities and place in their communities where they are raised.

Bill Strong represented MP Ben Lobb and Laura Higgins, who was the top Grade 9 student at F.E. Madill high school in Wingham officially opened the fair. "My parents and grandparents were in the parade that we were in today," she said, "so I'm really proud to be able to open the fair today."

"We are very concerned that next year, our 90th anniversary, may be our last fair," said Walden. "Our schools are being closed and amalgamated and we just aren't getting the volunteers that are needed. I think it would be disastrous if this were to happen but people have to step up to the plate or future generations will not have the same chances that these students here today have."

 Fair President Tim Walden & son Zachary with pumpkins raised by Zachary and his brother Jeffrey(absent)

 Older 'experts' inspect what the children have grown


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15/09/2009 10:57 PM

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 Fair sign

Bill Strong of MP Ben Lobb's office and Laura Higgins who opened the fair

 Students brought their favourite animals, from goats and sheep, to cattle and horses

 Tina Verschaeve tries to convince her calf 'Hazel' to move into the ring

80-year-old Bill Netherey has been playing the drum for almost 50 years and can't resist taking a turn

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