In 2009, the Erie County Agricultural Society inaugurated its award winning Fair Camp program as a way to stimulate an interest in agriculture, a passion for learning and foster a love of the Erie County Fair. In the 10 years of its existence, over 300 children and their parents have slept overnight in a barn, assisted with farm chores, showed animals in a livestock competition and worked inside a fair food concession.
Once again, the Erie County Agricultural Society will offer this two and a half day agricultural and county fair immersion experience for children ages 8-10 and an accompanying parent. Under the supervision of trained Camp Counselors, children will gain first-hand experience in raising, caring for and showing livestock as well as receive a “behind the scenes” look at the Fair.
The Camp hosts two sessions, one each week of the Fair (Friday-Sunday, August 10-12 and 17-19). Campers and a parent/guardian live on the Fairgrounds during the session in our “hay loft” located inside the Agriculture Discovery Center. Number of participants for each session is limited to six children and an accompanying parent. Small groups insure each child gets a unique experience and personal attention.
Children interested in participating are required to apply no later than May 7, 2018. Applications are available online at www.ecfair.org/p/other/346. There is no cost to attend Fair Camp, including meals and entertainment, as the program is underwritten by the Erie County Agricultural Society. Questions may be directed to the Fair’s Agriculture Education Office at (716)649-3900 ext 6499 or by emailing Education Coordinator Amber Klein at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The 6th Annual Empire State Beef Classic will be held at the Erie County Fairgrounds in Hamburg, New York on April 13-15, 2018. The show is open to exhibitors of all ages and gives individuals experience prior to showing at their local county and/or state fair. This year’s show will feature a clinic presented by Stock Show U/Sullivans Supply, a junior team fitting competition, junior skill-a-thon competition along with an exhibitor dinner. The breeding heifer show will be held on Saturday at 8am and the showmanship classes will be held at 2:00pm. The market heifer and steer show will be on Sunday at 8:00am.
The judge for the Junior Showmanship Competition, the Open Heifer Show and Open Market Animal Show will be Parker Henley of Urbana, IL.
In 2007, the three day show featured 148 exhibitors representing the states of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Maryland, Michigan and Wisconsin as well as international entries from Canada. $7000 in premiums and prizes was awarded.
For more information or an entry form please visit www.the-fairgrounds.com and click on “Livestock/Equine Events.” Participants can also call at (716) 649-3900 ext. 6480 for information. Late entries will be accepted up until 8:00pm on Saturday, April 14th.
The show was sponsored by the Erie County Agricultural Society with support from WW Livestock Systems and Eder Mulch.
Wine making, bread baking and herb gardening will be among the topics presented during this spring’s Adult Ag-ucation programs presented by the Erie County Agricultural Society. Now in its fourth year, the classes are open to participants 18+ years of age and are held inside the Erie County Fair’s Agriculture Discovery Center. Current offerings include:
Intro to Wine Making with Ten Thousand Vines– March 27th, 6:00 pm, cost: $10.00. Introduction to Wine Making is presented by Ten Thousand Vines. Participants will learn just how easy it is to get started making great wines for a fraction of what they cost in the stores. Presentation will include the mechanics of wine making from fermentation and racking to bottling and corking.
Bread Making – April 10th, 5:45pm, cost: $10.00. Learn how easy it is to make various types of yeast breads. Basic bread skills will be taught by making a batch of English Muffin Bread. Participants will receive recipes and instructions for making other types of yeast breads such as sour dough, salt rising, sweet rolls and whole grain breads. Information will also be given on rules and regulations for selling baked goods at farmers’ markets. Everyone will go home with a loaf of fresh, warm bread. The instructor will be Linda Dewey, 5th generation owner/operator of Silver Falls Farm, Perrysburg.
Herb Gardening – May 22nd, 6:30pm, cost: $12.00. Come learn about the wonderful world of herbs and bring home a container herb garden to enjoy in all seasons. The session will be conducted by Carol Ann Harlos, a Master Gardener and a freelance columnist for Forever Young magazine.
Additional Adult Ag-ucation program information and downloadable registration forms are available at http://bit.ly/AdultAgucation.
The first step in the process to determine which homebrew will be named the 2018 Erie County Fair “Best In Show” beer has been scheduled. Beginning Monday, April 2nd, homebrewers from across New York State may submit their brews in the Fair’s Homebrew Competition. The annual summer release of the limited run, craft beer based on the winning brew has become an anticipated tradition at the Erie County Fair for beer lovers.
Homebrew hobbyists have until Friday, April 6th to submit their beers for judging. In addition to the opportunity to win a gold medal for excellence, the Erie County Fair Homebrew Competition’s top entry will be professionally brewed and be named the 2018 “Erie County Fair Best In Show Beer.”
A $20 entry fee allows homebrewers to submit up to five entries in categorical styles ranging from lagers and pilsners to a variety of ale. Any New York State resident is eligible to enter the Homebrew competition. Judging is scheduled to take place Saturday, April 21st inside the Fair’s Ag-Grange Building. Top brews will be selected through a blind tasting panel made up of at least two certified master judges.
Once a “Best of Show” winner is determined, the brewer will be asked to submit the brew’s recipe which will then be turned over to the professional brew master of Flying Bison. Flying Bison will analyze the winning recipe to ensure that it is commercially and legally producible. In addition, an attempt will be made to brew the winning beer with all New York State sourced products. Once kegged, Try-It Distributing will distribute the finished product for public purchase at select Western New York outlets prior to the Fair. During the Erie County Fair, several on-premises locations will feature the award winning beer.
Homebrewers interested in entering the competition can find complete rules and guidelines on the Erie County website. Entries can be dropped off on Monday, April 2nd through Friday, April 6th between 9am and 5pm (with a copy of the entry form) to the Main Office of the Fairgrounds OR to Flying Bison Brewing Company on April 5th or 6th between the hours of 12pm and 8pm. Those dropping off brew entries entries at Flying Bison will be able to take home a filled growler of Flying Bison brew for $5.
The judging of homebrewed beer is just one of the competitions held annually by the Erie County Fair. In 2018, over 12,000 entries are expected to be received and judged by the Fair’s Competitive Exhibits Office. The wide range of ribbon winning categories include agriculture, conservation and creative arts, among others. Entry information for other categories will be available online as early as February 1st with registration opening May 1st.
Let the 150 day countdown to the Erie County Fair begin! As part of the Erie County Agricultural Society’s celebration of 150 years at its current site in Hamburg, the Erie County Fair will be holding a limited sale on admission tickets. The five-hour sale begins at 3pm TODAY, Monday, March 12th and concludes later tonight at 8pm.
Flash Sale tickets will be $5 each and may be used any day of the 2018 Fair. The sale price represents a 50% saving off regular adult gate admission. To purchase tickets, fairgoers can visit the Fair’s website at www.ECFair.org or stop in person to the Fairgrounds main office tonight from 3-8pm. There is a limit of 10 tickets per person.
2018 marks the 150th anniversary of the Erie County Fair being held at the Fairgrounds in Hamburg. In 1868, by a one vote margin, the Erie County Agricultural Society’s Board of Directors voted to move the Fair from the Village of Springville to property owned by Luther Titus and the Hamburg Driving Park Association. The property, that included a newly constructed half-mile racetrack, was offered free of charge for holding the annual Fair. The decision to relocate only 12 miles from the City of Buffalo kicked off a period of unprecedented growth for the Fair, eventually resulting in the Erie County Fair becoming one of the largest fairs in North America.
With six stages featuring over 110 musical performances, the Erie County Fair ranks as one of Western New York’s largest live performance festivals. In addition to music featuring genres from country to German and rock to jazz, the Fair also puts the spotlight on community performers such as dance ensembles, youth groups and aspiring vocalists.
The Erie County Fair is currently seeking regional entertainers to perform at the Fair’s various stage venues during the 179th Fair this August. Interested acts are asked to complete an online application here. Applications will be accepted through April 1st. Additional information about the Fair’s entertainment requirements can also be found online.
“The soundtrack of the Erie County Fair is provided by the immense talent found in our region,” said CEO & Fair Manager Jessica Underberg. “Fairgoers truly get to experience the best of Western New York on our various stages.”
The Erie County Agricultural Society is a private not-for-profit membership organization. Established in 1819, the Society is the oldest civic organization in Western New York. The mission of the Erie County Agricultural Society (ECAS), sponsors of the Erie County Fair, is to preserve and enhance, by educational endeavors, the agricultural and historical legacy of New York State. The Fair strives to fulfill appropriate aspects of the agricultural, educational, entertainment and recreational needs of Western New York. The 179th Fair will take place August 8-19, 2018. (www.ECFair.org).
The Erie County Agricultural Society (ECAS) is pleased to present up to $20,000 in scholarship opportunities to students who participate in the Erie County Fair. Scholarships are awarded based on general Fair participation and those involved in agricultural related activities. Since its inception in the 1950s, the scholarship program has strived to connect the region’s students with agriculture, business, and volunteerism. Two scholarship categories are available:
The Erie County Fair Scholarships seeks students who are enrolled or enrolling in a college or university. These students must have participated in the Erie County Fair in some capacity in order to be eligible. Participation includes, but is not limited to, employment, exhibition, volunteering, marching band, or other performances.
The Erie County Agricultural Society Scholarship is limited to students who are pursuing an agriculture related career. Students must be enrolled or enrolling in a college or university and must be able to describe how their field of study will help them in their agricultural endeavors.
Applicants do not have to attend a college in Erie County or live in Erie County to be eligible.
The 2018 scholarship applications are available online or at area high schools and colleges. The application postmark deadline is April 1, 2018. Questions regarding the scholarship program should be directed to the Erie County Agricultural Society’s Maria Lucero at 716-649-3900 ext. 6413.
About the Erie County Fair
The Erie County Agricultural Society is a private not-for-profit membership organization. Established in 1819, the Society is the oldest civic organization in Western New York. The mission of the Erie County Agricultural Society (ECAS), sponsors of the Erie County Fair, is to preserve and enhance, by educational endeavors, the agricultural and historical legacy of New York State. The Fair strives to fulfill appropriate aspects of the agricultural, educational, entertainment and recreational needs of Western New York. The 2018 Erie County Fair will be held August 8th – 19th (www.ECFair.org)
The vivid colors of a Western New York summer sunset and the slogan “The Best 12 Days of Summer” highlight the 2018 edition of the Erie County Fair’s commemorative poster. The poster was designed by Buffalo’s Wynne Creative Group and illustrated by Michael Gelen of Inkwell Studios.
“For a million Western New Yorkers, the Fair represents the apex of their summer experience,” said CEO & Fair Manager Jessica Underberg. “It’s the best of tradition, family, trills, competitions, food, entertainment all packaged within 12 non-stop days.”
Fairgrounds landmarks featured on this year’s poster include the 1885 Octagon Building, the 1928 West Grandstand and the 2014 Agricultural Discovery Center & Sky Barn Tower. Rides from the famous James E. Strates Shows midway, now it its 94th year of providing carnival amusements at the Erie County Fair, are also included.
The poster also makes reference to this year’s 150th anniversary of the Erie County Fair being held at the Fairgrounds in Hamburg. In 1868, by a one vote margin, the Erie County Agricultural Society’s Board of Directors voted to move the Fair from the Village of Springville to property owned by Luther Titus and the Hamburg Driving Park Association. The decision to relocate only 12 miles from the City of Buffalo began a period of unprecedented growth for the Fair, eventually resulting in the Erie County Fair becoming one of the largest fairs in North America.
Limited copies of the poster are available at the Fair’s Main Office during business hours for a $2 suggested donation to the Erie County Agricultural Society’s Scholarship Fund (limit 5 per person).