HISTORY OF THE
"Senior Citizen" of Lancaster County Fairs originally
organized as an
activity to display projects prepared by students attending what
was called the
. The first West Lampeter Fair
was held on October 22,23, and 24, 1924, at the
. The first premium book was
on four sheets of
paper compared to the present book of nearly 300 pages. The
first Dairy Judging was held at the 1925 fair and in 1928 the
Guernsey Calf Club
and Swine Judging began.
Fair was incorporated in 1929 and
operated with 13 directors. In 1930 the Fair became officially
. State aid was received in 1931
and tents were erected to house dairy animals and commercial displays.
"Moving Pictures", county horseshoe pitching, and band
concerts by the
Lampeter Fire Company Band were held in 1932. In 1935 the number
of directors increased to 21. 1936 brought Baby Beef, pure breed
livestock, commercial tomato exhibits and athletic events. By
1940 there were 31
directors, a 20 mule team show, and a community play. In 1945
the board of directors increased to its present number of 45.
The land presently
used as the Community Grounds was purchased in 1948 and
first used for the 1949 fair.
years between 1949 and 1974 of the West Lampeter Community Fair
were characterized by growth and expansion
of program and facilities. The exhibit hall, which is no longer
in existence, was used extensively. The school was also used and
the Community Grounds became an area for expanding the program.
The Western Horse
Show was started in 1952. The Livestock Queen Contest (presently
known as the Fair Queen Contest) was started in 1958. The Baby
Parade was started in 1973 by the Willow Street Woman's Club. In
1974 a new fire house
was built. For a period of time the basement of the fire
house and the
were used for exhibits.
Presently the firehouse is used to serve daily lunches and
dinners during Fair
1975 and 1999 the Open Floor Pavilion, Pole Barn Sales Arena and
Metal Display Pavilion were constructed which provided greater
covered space for the Fair program. A new lighting system was installed.
The expansion of the Yesterdays Farm Equipment, Antique Tractors,
Grandpap and Grandma exhibits have
added much to the Fair
commercial exhibits have increased to the point that four
tents are now needed.
addition of the Youth Encouragement
Awards have encouraged youth of the community to exhibit many
entries. The addition
of bleachers at the exhibit ring provided a welcome convenience for
the spectators at the many events held in the show ring. A purchase
of 16 acres of land adjacent to the present Fairgrounds has allowed
more convenient parking and room for possible expansion of Fair
activities. One of the most popular events for young people is
the greased pig catching contest which usually draws more than
500 youngsters from the surrounding community.
Sunday evening before the
Fair a Community Hymn Sing is held with local churches
facilitating the event. As evidenced by its history the present
Fair Directors and Fair Department Committee Personnel comprise
a unique blend of farmers, business
persons and public spirited citizens who value community service
to provide the community with an agricultural and educational
3 day event during the last full week of September provides
among neighbors and a wholesome educational atmosphere for
all ages. The Fair was proud to have its 2001 fair Queen elected
to represent the Pennsylvania State Association of County Fairs
for 2002. The 45 directors anticipate many more years of
providing a quality Fair, one which serves to connect the many
parts of the community to one another in an atmosphere of
thankfulness for the many blessings which have
been provided to us.