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Drayton getting an early jump on fall fair season

Celebrating 100 years of 4-H, the Drayton Fall Fair rolls into the community in just a couple of weeks. Organizers hope the clouds won’t rain on their parade this time as they prepare for the first events on August 9. Drayton Mapleton Agricultural Society president Brad Schieck may laugh about it now, but last year’s bad weather put a damper on the affair.

“Hopefully it doesn’t rain. It rained last year and we lost our Friday-night [truck] pull. That didn’t do us any favours and really hit our bottom line overall,” he said this week.

Heralding the fall festival season, Drayton holds the second of the season’s fall fair streak (Listowel held its fair on July 18) and organizers are excited to celebrate a huge high point for 4-H Club members.

“Anything that runs for that long that involves youth, I think is a real milestone. We’re very excited about that – 4-H has always been very strong up in our area, and 4-H also takes in a lot of different clubs,” Schieck said.

Youths from the local 4-H chapter will be at the fair as representatives to show visitors what they have learned, he added.

“We have a couple of displays coming in, celebrating 4-H. We have some members coming in demonstrating some of the stuff that they have learned.”

Some of the visitor favourites will be making a comeback during the three-day affair, including the midway, animal shows (horse, goat and dairy cattle on Saturday, sheep and beef cattle shows on Sunday), a magician for the kids and a demolition derby closing off the show on Sunday night.

Returning for the third year, the newest tractor-pull event will give participants a chance to continue in the competition to enter the Elora pulling contest in September.

“It’s called King of the Pull. The local guys go in and see what they can do. There are three different classes for that and they are all local farm tractors. These guys come straight out of the field with a tractor and then they hook on and see how far they can pull and who gets the best distance. Whoever does the best then qualifies to go to Elora,” he said.

With all of the upcoming excitement, Schieck hopes the sunny weather will stick around.

“Hope to see everybody and that the weather cooperates.”

The Drayton Fall Fair starts at 5 p.m. on August 9 and ends at 5 p.m. on August 11. Admission is $10, with free passes for children under 12. The new family rate this year is $25 for four people. For schedules, prices and more information visit the Drayton Fair’s new website at www.draytonfair.com.

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