This year’s Vankleek Hill Fair is set for August 17 to 20, 2017, and will commemorate Canada’s sesquicentennial with its theme, “Celebrating the past 150 years, embracing the future.”
Planning for the fair hit a rough patch when the midway provider that had already been booked for the fair, Carter Shows, cancelled. This year’s Vankleek Hill Agricultural Society president, Bev Newton, said the company sold one of its units, and as a result was double-booked for the dates of the Vankleek Hill fair. “It was very upsetting to us as an ag society, because this happened in January, and as of December everything was good to go,” he said.
Newton said finding another midway was a challenge on such short notice. “It was very difficult to get the one we wanted because they’re all booked,” he said. “We had a choice of changing our fair dates, which is not really an option.” But, ultimately, another midway was found: Gable Brothers Amusements will be at the fair this year. “It’s not quiet as big as last year’s, but it will do the job,” he said.
The fair committee is also planning a second-annual Show n’ Shine and truck pull. The event is set for June 17, with the rain date on June 18. “Hopefully it will be bigger and better” than last year’s event, said Newton. The committee hopes to have modified trucks and tractors participate this year. The first event, in June of 2016, saw 50 trucks participate in the Show n’ Shine, 25 participate in the truck pull, and about 1500 people in attendance. The day generated about $18,786 in revenue after expenses, according to the Vankleek Hill Agricultural Society’s Annual Report for 2016. This year, because the event will be held on Father’s Day weekend, for every Show n’ Shine truck entry, $5 will be donated to Ride for Dad, a charity dedicated to raising money for prostate cancer research and awareness. “We thought that would be nice to do,” said Newton.
New this year, the fair organizers will require anyone who wants to fly a drone over the Show n’ Shine or the fair to provide proof of insurance. “They have to provide that to us at the office, before flying the drone,” said Newton.