BARTON, VT - This year marks the 145th anniversary of the Orleans County Fair in Barton, VT. Steeped in history and rich with agricultural tradition, the fair provides a jam packed week of exhibits, competitions and entertainment for all ages.
Harvey Cleveland, the fair association president, said, â€śThe association is always working to keep our rich agricultural history, and we also have to keep up with the demand for new features and innovative ideas.â€ť
A good example of that was two years ago when Dairy on the Moove debuted, providing a use for the milk from dairy cows on exhibit during fair week. The portable cheese making factory processes the milk into cheese curds. It now provides this service for other fairs throughout Vermont and New England.
This year, to celebrate the fairâ€™s 145th anniversary, fair attendees will find plenty of exhibits to satisfy the local history buff or agricultural traditionalist. Be sure to look for the many new additions unique to the Orleans County Fair and some new acts that have never been seen in Vermont.
Two new and permanent interactive exhibits on the grounds this year include The Little Farm Hands and Scarecrow University.
Little Farm Hands is a delightful â€śchild sizedâ€ť farm consisting of several mini-barns, a garden, grain silo, chicken coop, apple orchard and general store. Little farm hands, ages three to ten, with the help of their little tractors, can do the daily chores of collecting eggs, gathering wool from sheep, picking apples, milking the cow and bringing the produce to market, where they will receive â€ślittle farm hands dollarsâ€ť to spend at the general store.
Local businesses sponsored the buildings. North Country Career Center building trades students did the construction. The New England and Orleans County Dairy Promotion Boards sponsored the milking cow.
Scarecrow University is a little red schoolhouse serving as a backdrop for both the scarecrow and container garden contests and silent auctions. Fairgoers attending Scarecrow University can play with memory card games, word searches, coloring pages, chalk board doodling and have story time. Adults can place bids on container gardens and scarecrows to take home for their own yards. Prizes for both the Scarecrow and Container Garden Contests are $100, $75 and $50 for first, second and third places.
For more about the 145th Orleans County Fair, see the Newport Daily Express, Aug. 14 and 15, 2012.