Welcome to the Erie County Fair Blog!

October 20th, 2014

We are more than the Erie County Fair! Click on the logos below to find out more about all the fun at the Fairgrounds!

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Concert Announcement: MEGHAN TRAINOR

March 16th, 2015

The Erie County Fair has added rising pop star Meghan Trainor to the GUSTO Grandstand concert lineup. The concert will take place on Thursday, August 13 at 7:30pm.

Meghan Trainor may seem like a newcomer to the music scene, but at age 21 she has already been in the business for six years. At just fifteen, Trainor put out her first of three self-released albums. Though the albums didn’t propel her singing career they launched her songwriting career. Meghan Trainor has written songs for Rascal Flatts, Hunter Hayes, and Hot Chelle Rae.

After moving to Nashville Trainor began to collaborate with Grammy-nominated producer/songwriter Kevin Kadish. The duo began working on her first studio album, which would combine hip-hop rhythm, country melodies, and a calypso band sound.

Meghan Trainor’s first studio single “All About that Bass,” heralds the importance of loving your curves, and empowers girls everywhere to respect their bodies. More than a message, the single has a pop backing with a hook that’s impossible to get out of your head. The song was nominated for two 2015 Grammys and spent eight non-consecutive weeks at Number One.

Trainor’s debut studio album Title came on the heels of “All About That Bass” and also features the current hit “Lips Are Movin.” Upon its release the album knocked Taylor Swift’s 1989 out of Number One in the US. The album also reached Number One in Canada, the UK, Australia, and New Zealand.  Title is full of tracks that are brutally honest and speak to the pressures of growing up. While the message of the album is strong, the urge to sing along is even stronger.

Information regarding ticket prices and when tickets will be available is still to be announced. The Erie County Fair website, ecfair.org will make the information available at a later date.

The 2015 Erie County Fair will take place August 12-23, 2015. 

Concert Announcement: LITTLE BIG TOWN

March 12th, 2015

 The Erie County Fair is excited to announce LittleBigTown_2014that award winning country group Little Big Town will join the concert lineup in the GUSTO Grandstand.  The concert will take place on Sunday, August 16 at 7:30pm.

Little Big Town formed more than fifteen years ago in Alabama. The group known for their harmonizing vocals, catchy lyrics, and feel good beats made a big splash in country music in 2005 with the release of “Boondocks.” The success continued with the later release of “Little White Church,” which went on to be nominated for a Grammy.

The largest of Little Big Town’s albums was Tornado, released in 2010, which included the award winning song “Pontoon.”  The band consisting of, Karen Fairchild, Phillip Sweet, Kimberly Schlapman, and Jimi Westbrook, released their sixth studio album Pain Killer in late 2014. The album reached Number Three on US Country Music Charts with hits including “Day Drinking” and “Girl Crush.”

LBT2015The group has been nominated for 25 awards. From these nominations they took home the honors for CMA Vocal Group of the Year in 2012 and 2013, among others. Little Big Town is currently nominated for Vocal Group of the year at the upcoming American Country Music Awards (April 15, 2015).

Little Big Town is hitting the road on their second headline tour in 2015. Entitled “The Pain Killer Tour,” this round of shows hopes to outdo the sold out “Tornado Tour,” of 2013.

This show will include special guests David Nail and Ashley Monroe.

Information regarding ticket prices and when tickets will be available is still to be announced.

 

 

Concert Announcement: ALABAMA

March 5th, 2015

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The Erie County Fair is excited to announce country trio ALABAMA has been added to the 2015 Grandstand Lineup. The band will be taking the stage August 17, 2015 at the GUSTO Grandstand with a show beginning at 8:00pm. This is the first official 

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Grandstand announcement for the 2015 Fair. More shows will be added in the coming weeks.  ALABAMA has been making music together for four decades. Those years have brought 43 Number One singles, with 21 of them coming consecutively. Some of these classic singles include, “Tennessee River,” “Love in the First Degree,” and “Song of the South.” After selling more than 73 million albums, ALABAMA has found itself induced into the Country Music Hall of Fame, as well as on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

The band is comprised of self-proclaimed “renegades,” as they shocked the country music scene in sneakers and t-shirts in a time of hats and boots. The success of ALABAMA created a revolution within country music that has led to bands blending “traditional” country sound with rock and roll.

The band will be releasing their first studio album in more than fourteen years in 2015.

Ticket information is still to come!

 

Ready, Set, Brew…

March 3rd, 2015

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The 2nd Annual Erie County Fair Homebrew Competition is being judged quite a bit earlier this year (Saturday, April 25). Entry information is now available on our website. The Competition is open to all NYS residents.

So, why so early??? The Best of Show winner will have their beer brewed by Flying Bison and sold by Try-It Distributing at various local establishments in July. It will also be sold as “The Erie County Fair Beer” at all 5 Fairground locations throughout The Fair! Flying Bison will make every attempt to brew the beer will all NYS products if possible.

Entry Info: $20.00 allows up to 5 entries and includes 5 admissions to the Fair.

Drop Off: Entries can be dropped off on Monday, April 13th through Friday, April 17th between 9 AM and 5 PM (with a copy of the entry form) to the Main Office of the Fairgrounds. If entries are mailed they MUST be received by Friday, April 17th end of business day.

 Judging: Saturday, April 25th in the Ag-Grange Building

 Click Here for More Information 

FAIR CAMP 2015: Campers Wanted

March 3rd, 2015

 

Have you ever wondered what it is like to sleep in the barns at the Erie County Fair? Have you ever wanted to take care of and show an animal?  Have you every wondered how cotton candy is made?   

Fair Camp Web adThe Erie County Fair is excited to announce Fair Camp will return for the 7th year! Camp is open to kids ages 8-10 and their same-sex parent. Campers will have the opportunity to sleep in the barns, help take care of the animals,  ride in the Fair parade, and work with a concessionaire. The grand finale of Fair Camp is when the campers participate in their own livestock show. 

Campers and their guardians will come away from the  experience with a greater knowledge of agriculture and livestock, as well as an inside look at the Erie County Fair.

Fair Camp is FREE to attend, but due to limited space, kids must apply and be accepted in order to participate. Applications are available now here or by calling the Agriculture Education office at (716) 649-3900 ext. 6260.  Applications are due May 18th. 

The weekends for Fair Camp this year are August 14-16 and 21-23.

Past participants from Fair Camp have gone on to join their local 4-H chapters and some even exhibit regularly at the Fair. Parents of campers believe that Camp is not only a great learning opportunity for their children, but  an excellent way to spend time with their kids doing something fun.

WNY Farm Show Returns to Fairgrounds

January 22nd, 2015

 

WNY Farm Show- February 5-7, 2015

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The Fairgrounds in Hamburg will host the 5th Annual WNY Farm Show. This three day event works to bring together some of the region’s best equipment providers and farm services with their customer base of agriculturalists, horticulturalists, and local  farmers. The show will offer seminars, activities for the kids, and concessions as well.

This show is free and open to the public.

The 2015 WNY Farm Show will take place February 5-7. The show will fill two buildings, the Showplex and Agriculture Discovery Center, which are both heated. Show hours are Thursday, February 5 from 9:00am-5:00pm, Friday, February 6 from 9:00am-7:00pm, and Saturday, February 7 from 9:00am-3:00pm.

More than seventy-five exhibitors, some traveling from as far as Iowa, will be offering a range of products and services geared towards all facets of agribusiness. Many of these vendors will be offering Farm Show specials, especially on heave equipment such as tractors, trailers, and combines. (Click here for a complete list of vendors)

Seminars will be scheduled throughout the run of the show. These seminars are free to attend and cover a multitude of topics. This year’s highlights include “Rules and Regulations of the Highway,” which will provide the latest information on hauling trailers

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from livestock to snowmobiles. Past president of the American Angus Association Phil Throwbridge will also be hosting a session “Beef Cattle Bull Selection.” Cabela’s will be teaming up with the Quality Deer Management Association (QDMA) for a seminar titled “Plotting a Plan for Success.” This talk will explain best practices for setting up food plots when hunting white-tailed deer. The QDMA focuses on safety, conservation, and the health of the environment when discussing hunting practices.

There is something for everyone at the WNY Farm Show, including the kids. The 60,000 square foot Agriculture Discovery Center will be open and full of activities. Kids will have the opportunity to milk a cow by hand using the simulator Milkable Mabel.

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Demonstrations will also be taking place on how cows are milked by robot. The Agriculture Discovery Center is also home to a combine simulator that allows guests to climb up and “drive” through a field of corn. There will also be hands on Ag-tivities for kids that combine learning and fun. This state of the art stalling and educational facility opened in August 2014, and is one of the largest of its kind in the region.

Guests navigating using a GPS should use the address 5600 McKinley Parkway, Hamburg, NY 14075. The gate for entry is located near the stoplight at the intersection of Quinby Drive and McKinley Parkway.

Erie County Fair Breaks the Top 10

January 5th, 2015

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With the close of 2014 came CarnivalWarehouse.com’s list of the largest Fairs in North America. The Erie County Fair found itself in eleventh place at the end of 2013 and was hoping the 175th celebration, which drew a record attendance (1,220,101), would push the Fair up into the Top 10.

Well, like a late  Christmas present, the list was published and the Erie County Fair is excited to announce that it has moved into tenth place! The Fair is in great company inside the Top 10, with many state fairs edging ahead. The Erie County Fair finished _A7U2201Number Three for largest  county fairs in North America.

This is the first time that the Erie County Fair has received such a high ranking on this list. The Fair found itself in 19th in 2009, and has been on an upward trajectory ever since. “This historic ranking is something that the entire Buffalo-Niagara region can take pride in accomplishing,” said Jessica Underberg, Assistant Fair Manager.

Beyond receiving a Top 10 ranking, the Erie County Fair won 31 awards at the International Association of  Fairs and Expositions (IAFE) annual convention, held this past December. The IAFE  has over 2,000 members.  The Erie County Fair competes in a division with all Fairs who have an attendance 1 million or higher. This puts the Erie County Fair in a category with many state fairs.  The awards are as follows. 

 

AGRICULTURAL AWARDS

1st Place – What was newly established or developed at your fair to promote agriculture

1st Place – Fair and Sponsor/Partner Joint Exhibit Program

1st Place – Printed Material

1st Place – Video of a Special or Unique Event for Exhibitors or the Fairgoing Public

1st Place – Agriculture Photo

2nd Place – Special or Specific Event for Agricultural Exhibitors

2nd Place – Special or Specific Agricultural Educational Event, Exhibit or Program for the Fairgoing Public

2nd Place – Program Designed to Correct an Issue or Problem Related/Competitive or Non-Competitive Ag Program

3rd Place – Consumer Awareness in the Agricultural Environment

3rd Place – Agriculture Photo Series- 5 photos of exhibitor with his prize winning cow

 

HALL OF HONOR COMMUNICATIONS AWARDS

1st Place – Unique Advertising Specialties/Merchandise/Souvenirs

1st Place – Web Advertising

1st Place – Overall Mobile Campaign

1st Place – Mobile App

2nd Place – Overall Social Media Campaign

2nd Place – Misc. Marketing/Promotional Display or Piece

3rd Place – Best Marketing Campaign

3rd Place – Promotional Advertising – Outdoor

3rd Place – Television

3rd Place – Promotional Poster

3rd Place – Printed Promotional Materials

3rd Place – Commemorative Poster

3rd Place – Promotional Event

 

COMPETITIVE EXHIBITS AWARDS

1st Place – Competitive exhibits display photo (tied)

2nd Place – General display photo

2nd Place – Display method or prop

2nd Place – New or unique division

2nd Place – Create it on the spot

2nd Place – Participatory contest

3rd Place – Unique contest

3rd Place – General display series

On behalf of the Erie County Fair, its staff, directors, and volunteers, THANK YOU WNY, for making this a must-visit summer attraction year after year! It is with your help that the Erie County Fair has grown to what it has become today, an internationally recognized event in both size and accolades. Thank you!

2014: A YEAR IN REVIEW

December 31st, 2014

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With 2014 coming to a close, the Fairgrounds looks back on the top fourteen stories that made this year one of the best yet on the grounds. The stories are not in order of importance, but chronological instead. So take a journey through the past twelve months and relive some of the most exciting moments of the year!

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raceway

The Buffalo Raceway was not without  excitement in 2014. In total seven track records were equaled or broken. The biggest of these feats was by far Gural Hanover lowering the all age trot mark to 1:56:1 as a 3 year old. 

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HORSHOE

The Fairgrounds is home to many exciting events, many of which return year after year. 2014, however, was extra special in that the Fairgrounds had the opportunity to host the NHPA World Horseshoe Tournament. More than 1,500 horseshoe pitching competitors from around the world made their way to the grounds for the 12 day competition. With pits lining the Event Center, and the constant clank of horseshoes hitting the pin, the competition was by far one of the most unique events the grounds have ever hosted. 

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The 60,000 square foot Agriculture Discovery Center opened its doors becoming one of the largest buildings of its kind in the region. From livestock stalling to the fun (and educational) components, the ADC is one of the Fairgrounds’ greatest achievements in 2014. Opening its doors at the beginning of August, it was truly incredible to see the all of the hard work and creativity come together. 

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The celebration for this historic anniversary began in 2013, but the party really got started once 2014 hit. The Fair Truck made appearances throughout WNY, 17,500 wooden nickels were passed out, planning for the Fair was underway, and finally the time had come to really celebrate. From an opening night with the BPO, to honoring traditions, eating food, riding rides, and creating memories, the 2014 Erie County Fair was an incredible event.

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fireworks

For many years, days at the Fair ended its nights with dark skies. In 2014, the Erie County Fair was excited to bring back a crowd favorite, fireworks. With the help of Sklighters of New York, the Fair was able to feature three nights of incredible pyrotechnic showcases.  Could the tradition of illuminated skies continue into 2015….you will have to wait and see!

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After more than a year in the making, the Erie County Fair Skywalk was the highlight of the 175th Fair. 125 Feet above the grounds Nik Wallenda made his way slowly from the Midway to the Grandstand in his longest walk of the year. For the first time ever there was silence on the grounds, that was until Wallenda made it to the crane and pumped his fist. A collective sigh could be heard before 100,000+ people let out a deafening cheer!

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fair attendance

The 175th Fair promised to be the BEST FAIR EVER, and it certainly delivered. The Fair’s attendance record was broken, yet, again with 1,220,101 people coming through the gates in just 12 days. 

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The Showplex and Agriculture Discovery Center played host to the National Junior Swine Association’s regional show at the beginning of October. More than 250 hogs came from as far as Colorado to compete. Exhibitors and their families were treated to special events, such as a movie night in the Silo Theater, as well as a friendly but competitive Skill-a-thon testing everyone’s knowledge about pigs.

 

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Farm 2 Table spent a good deal of the year on the road, while construction was completed on the ADC, however, in October the grade school program returned home to the Fairgrounds. In just three months the program has educated more than 2,000 students grades K-5 on everything agriculture from apples and turkeys, to Christmas trees! The program looks forward to an even bigger 2015.

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Another holiday favorite at the Fairgrounds, Christmas in the Country Artisan Marketplace, opened its doors for its 30th year. While all of them haven’t been at the Fairgrounds, it is still  great to be part of this show’s long history!  In 2014, more than 30,000 visitors came to the grounds to get their hands on holiday gifts right as the shopping season began. 

snowevmber

It wasn’t just the Fairgrounds, it was all of WNY. The storm dropped nearly six feet of snow on the grounds causing quite a bit of havoc. From a downed barn to the postponement of the Festival of Lights the Fairgrounds did not get through unscathed. However, much like the incredible people of WNY, the Fairgrounds bounced back and are ready to rebuild bigger and better than ever! 

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Celebrating a decade lighting up WNY’s holiday season, the Fairgrounds Festival of Lights opened its gates (a week late due to Snowvember) to families by the carload. The Festival celebrated by opening up the all new North Pole Experience. This walk through display led guests to Santa’s house, where they could meet the Big Guy himself. The Festival also featured shows, activities, rides, food, and of course more than one million twinkling lights.

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awards    After the hard work that poured into the 175th Erie County Fair, the Fairgrounds received honors at the IAFE (International Association of Fairs and Expositions)  Awards for Communications, Agriculture, and Competitive Exhibits. With the Fair bringing home more than a dozen awards in everything from the app to the ADC, it feels great to be recognized for the efforts put forth by the dedicated Fair staff. 

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Through the Festival of Lights was postponed due to the Snowvember storm for a week, it didn’t stop guests from coming out by the carload. In 2014 the previous attendance record was shattered with 11,520 carloads coming through the gates and celebrating the season right here on the Fairgrounds.       

Fair Merchandise in Time for the Holidays

December 16th, 2014

Need to get some holiday shopping done? The Erie County Fair is excited to open up its online merchandise store yet again for 2014! There are 5 exciting products being offered this year, including the return of the 12-Day Season pass.

Happy Shopping!

1. 12-Day Pass. You asked for it , WNY and the Fair is ready to deliver. 12-day passes will be for sale again this year for the 176th Erie County Fair. The passes are available for $25* and there is a 4 per person limit. When you break it down, its only $2.08 per day at the Fair! Supplies are limited. Click here to purchase

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2. DVD. Maybe you caught it on WNED when it aired in late spring, or maybe you missed it! Relive the memories of the Fair all year through with The Great Erie County Fair on DVD. The disc features bonus content, including an interview with Mr. Strates! DVDs are $10.* Click here to purchase

3. Book. The Images of America: Erie County Fair book will be for sale, at the Fairgrounds Main Office only. The supplies are very limited. However, savvy online shoppers can find the book for sale at Amazon.com, and BarnesAndNoble.com. The book will sell at the offices for $20.

4. Ornament. They flew off the shelves in 2014, being sold out long before Christmas 2014, so do not delay in ordering your 176th Fair ornament. The hand painted ornament features the 2015 Fair poster. The ornaments are just $15*.  Click here to purchase

5. Gift Card. The Erie County Fair gift card is the perfect gift for the Fair-natic in your life! The card can be redeemed for admission at the Fair, or cashed in for money to spend on your favorite food or shopping vendor. Gift cards are $25* Click here to purchase

All of these great items are available at the Fairgrounds Main Office- located inside the Grandstand. Sales at the Office can be made through cash or credit.

*Prices do not include shipping & handling.

The Holiday Spirit of Competiton

November 7th, 2014

Ffest logoor those of you who need a little friendly competition to get you into the holiday spirit, the Fairgrounds Festival of Lights has just the fix. The tenth annual Festival will be offering three holiday contests. 

Cash prizes are awarded to top three in each contest. Please, download an entry form and read all the rules before beginning your project- this listing only mentions the highlights of each competition!

Holiday Stocking Competition

  • Bring your homemade stocking to the Fairgrounds between November 17-21 for judging
  • All stockings will remain on display at the Festival of Lights (through Dec. 28)
  • Two divisions Junior (16 and under) and Adult (17+)
  • Judging is based on technicality, creativity, and eye appeal
  • Stockings will be eligible to win a “People’s Choice Award,” based on votes from guests at the Festival of Lights.

Click here for more information and contest entry

Wreath Decorating Competition

  • Bring your artificial wreath to the Fairgrounds between November 17-21 for judging
  • All wreaths will remain on display at the Festival of Lights (through Dec. 28)
  • Judging is based on technicality, creativity, and eye appeal
  • Wreaths will be eligible to win a “People’s Choice Award,” based on votes from guests at the Festival of Lights. TK8A0542

Click here for more information and contest entry

Gingerbread Decorating Competition

  • You must pre-register for this competition - and space is limited
  • Participants must bring all of their own disassembled pieces and embellishments
  • Everything used must be edible
  • Judging is based on difficulty, appearance, and originality
  • Competitors must race against the clock to construct and decorate the best gingerbread house

Click here for more information and contest entry