After being cancelled last year due to the fires, highway closures, and smoke, the Ashcroft and District Fall Fair is back in 2018; so get ready for a day for the whole family with something old and something new at the Drylands Arena in Ashcroft, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, September 9.
There has been a fall fair in the area—held under different names—since 1889, celebrating the best in local produce, flowers, baking, canning, crafts, photography, and more. The theme of this year’s fair is “Celebrating Fruit”, and Kat Chatten, vice-president of the Fall Fair committee, says that there will be old favourites such as The aMOOzing Race and zucchini races back, as well as new entertainment and events, including a pie-eating contest.
“It’s just for fun,” says Chatten of the contest. “We always try to have a weird and wacky contest each year, but sometimes people don’t want to participate. We hope they will this year.”
The aMOOzing Race sees pairs of contestants racing around town to accomplish quests and be the first ones back, while the zucchini races will feature contestants propelling their homemade vehicles (which must utilize a zucchini) down ramps to see which one goes the furthest.
There will also be an all-day Ag-tivity Centre, where kids can work on crafts and projects, and two confirmed children’s entertainers: Trixie the Clown and Medievent.
“Trixie has performed here with WRAPS, and people love her,” says Chatten. “She’ll be doing a stage show, as well as two workshops for kids under 12: one called Kazoos and Squeakers, which is a music and merrymaking session, and one called Song Time, which features songs in English and in French.”
Medievent features performance artists who specialize in medieval times. “There’ll be reenactments and entertainment for juniors.” There is also space for any community groups or individuals who want to get up and provide entertainment. “Song, dance, handbells: anything goes,” says Chatten. “That should be part of a community fair, to show what’s available. If someone wants to come out, we’ll make room.”
Rolling Thunder Sound and Audio will be there all day to provide music, and there will be concessions, including the Ashcroft and District Lions Club (hamburgers, hot dogs, and fries) and the Rotary Club of Ashcroft-Cache Creek (beef on a bun). There is also a vendor area for local products and businesses, with spaces still available at $10 each (participants must supply their own tables and chairs).
And of course there is room for anyone to submit their own work for judging, in dozens of different categories. Entries can be brought to the Drylands Arena between 3 and 7 p.m. on Friday, September 7 and between 9 and 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, September 8. Judging takes place the afternoon of September 8, with the winners revealed at the fair.
The Canadian Red Cross has provided funding for the event, and admission is by donation. This year’s fair is being planned and organized by the Desert Mesa Lions Club, a new branch of the Ashcroft and District Lions Club made up of members in Cache Creek and the surrounding area.
Chatten says that there was felt to be a need for a Lions Club serving Cache Creek, as well as Clinton and Savona, which recently lost their Lions Clubs. “The Ashcroft club is a more traditional one; Desert Mesa is more streamlined,” explains Chatten. “But we both need new members.”
She adds that the fall fair could always use more volunteers, in the run-up to the event and on the day. Anyone interested in volunteering can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Booklets with details of the various entry categories and an entry form can be picked up at the visitor centres, post offices, and libraries in Ashcroft and Cache Creek, as well as at Ashcroft Bakery and at Safety Mart. They can also be viewed and downloaded as a pdf at http://bit.ly/2MAypGa, and information can be found at the website (www.ashcroftfallfair.ca) or on the Facebook page (Ashcroft & District Fall Fair).
“It’s the biggest little fair in B.C.,” says Chatten. “We should be proud. It’s a tiny community, but a big show.”