by Bethany M. Dunbar
BARTON, VT — Both the new president and the recently resigned president of the Orleans County Fair said things went very smoothly at this year’s fair, which was held Aug. 14-18.
Attendance was tied with record-high numbers from last year, according to the new fair president, Mike Tetreault. He said 18,000 people came over four days, not counting many who had free passes for showing animals or for other reasons.
Harvey Cleveland has stepped down as president after four years at the helm. “I work full time now, and I just don’t have time, to be honest,” said Cleveland. He said he is still a member of the board of directors and spent quite a bit of time at the fair — but not as much as he would have had to as president. “I miss a lot of it, but I guess it’s a good miss, I actually get a lot of sleep.”
Cleveland said he knew he wasn’t going to have the time, so he stepped down on July 7. He said he got the flu as the fair was starting, so it was a relief not to have to work the usual 20-hour days for seven or eight days in a row as president.
Tetreault said Harvey Cleveland will be missed, and did a superb job. “Anybody replacing him, it’s not going to be easy,” he said.
But Tetreault is no stranger to the fairgrounds and has been on the board of directors for some time. Like Cleveland, he is personally interested in the tractor pulling competitions.
Tetreault said it was wonderful to have nice weather for the fair this year, but he wonders if the attendance records might have been even better had the weather not been so perfect. Many farmers had a hard time making hay during June and July rains, so they might not have been able to take a nice day off in August to attend the fair.
Still, he said, things went well. He said there were no big disasters, and that’s something to be glad of. “It seemed like everybody was in a good mood,” he said.
Tetreault noted that the fair board meets in November to elect new officers each year.
Some of the events at the Orleans County Fair at Roaring Brook Park in Barton, VT include dairy cattle shows, horse shows, horse pulling, tractor pulling, arts and crafts, vegetable and pickle competitions, and a demolition derby on Sunday.
by Bethany M. Dunbar