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Boonville fair 2020 cancelled pic

BOONVILLE- The coronavirus pandemic has certainly been unfair to our local fairs and other events that we all look forward to this time of year.

As the 200th Lewis County Fair abandoned ship earlier this month along with the New York State Woodsmen's Field Days, the same card has been played for the Boonville Oneida County Fair.

"Our concern is is first and foremost the safety and well being of each and every person, attendees and volunteers who make each year's fair a success," President Dave Hyatt said. "It's impossible for us to adhere to all of the CDC standards and recommendations and still provide a safe and entertaining event."

On top of that, even if somehow things managed to fall into place where a fair could safely take place in July, Hyatt said it would be awfully difficult as the fair and other events have been unable to obtain proper permits for mass gatherings.

According to Hyatt, this is the first time since 1943 that there won't be a fair in Boonville. WW-II was the reason the fair did not occur that year, but it has ran otherwise since 1888, Hyatt confirmed.

A big country music show was scheduled for Saturday night of the Fair, featuring Jo Dee Messina and Mark Wills, just one of several entertainment acts that Hyatt hopes will still return for 2021. "Everyone has different schedules," he said. "We're hoping that we can keep all of the entertainment that we had scheduled for this year and get them to come next year."

One local fair enthusiast is devastated with this news, but says public safety has to come first, even if it means temporarily giving up on the things we enjoy and loom forward to so much.    

"It won't be the same," Carl Trainor explained. "The fair has been such a huge part of our community and this is the first time in my whole life we will not have a fair, but it's what we have to do. We have to keep our towns, villages and the general area as safe as possible from this virus."

Mr. Trainor has been involved with the Boonville fair ever since he was a child. He loves the fair so much, he even keeps and maintains his own miniature model carnival, which he displays each year in the Exhibit Hall.

If all goes well between now and next summer, Mr. Hyatt and the rest of the Boonville Fair Board hope to see you on the grounds July 27-August 1, 2021.

Listen to our featured on-air story with President Hyatt here:


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