Canfield Fair’s rich rural roots

Hearty bites of deep-fried Twinkies and topsy turvy twists aboard the Zipper ride rank among thousands of sensual delights typically available at the Canfield Fair.

As the gates swing open Wednesday to the 167th edition of Ohio’s largest county fair, hundreds of thousands of fair connoisseurs will once again indulge in those and other treats. As they do, we’d urge them also to step back and take full stock of the annual Mahoning County Agricultural Exhibition — with an accent on agricultural.

Though the fair has matured and diversified over the years to include a variety of city-slicker attractions and foods, the heart and soul of the fair still lies deeply in its rich agrarian roots.

The Mahoning County Agricultural and Horticultural Society, founded at Canfield in 1846, established its Grand Annual Fair to bring together the people and their products to compare notes and relate experiences. Today, that tradition endures with fresh farm products, livestock, poultry, pumpkins, antique tractors and other tools of the farming trade proudly on display.

The fair remains in part a celebration and appreciation of Mahoning County farmers. At Canfield Fair time — and all the time through the year — they provide nutritious food for our tables and vital fuel for our local economy.

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