Vermont’s Agricultural Fairs

Vermont's Agricultural Fairs

Almost every county in the state hosts an agricultural fair with whirring rides, fast-talking game barkers and greasy food. Here, rich and poor, rural and citified, young and old mingle in a way that is rarely seen elsewhere.

Photographer Daria Bishop spent time a few years back going to the state’s many fairs to capture this longtime Vermont tradition. She found compelling behind-the-scenes tales, memorable faces and stories of love.

Every fair, like every Vermont community, has its own traditions. For the Deerfield Valley Farmers’ Day Fair, the tradition is pie eating. Daria discovered that Travis Bolte of Readsboro was the defending champion. At one sitting, he ate 14 ounces of pie — not quite as good as the previous year, but still good. “There was a tiebreaker,” he says. “So they scooped pie off the ground, and I had to eat it again.”

Depending on the fair, there are local traditional favorites. At the Addison County Field Days in New Haven, locals line up for popular competitions like cast-iron frying pan distance throws, arm wrestling, and scything. Whether or not you get into the action, our bet is that you’ll have a good time.

These are Vermont’s 2014 agricultural fairs and field days:

Addison County Fair and Field Days August 5- 9, 2014 Take me there
Bondville Fair August 22 - 24, 2014 Take me there
Caledonia County Fair August 20-24, 2014 Take me there
Champlain Valley Fair Aug. 23 - Sept. 1, 2014 Take me there
Connecticut Valley Fair/Bradford Fair July 17 - 20, 2014 Take me there
Deerfield Valley Farmer's Day Exhibition  August 14 - 17, 2014 Take me there
Franklin County Field Days Jul. 31 - Aug. 3, 2014 Take me there
Guilford Fair Aug. 31 - Sept. 1, 2014 Take me there
Lamoille County Field days July 25 - 27, 2014 Take me there
Orleans County Fair August 13 - 17, 2014 Take me there
Pownall Valley Fair July 26, 2014 N/A
Tunbridge World's Fair September 11 - 14, 2014  Take me there
Vermont Dairy Festival N/A Take me there
Vermont Farm Show January 27-29, 2015 Take me there
Vermont Flower Show Feb. 27 - Mar. 1, 2015 Take me there
Vermont History Expo June 21 - 22, 2014 Take me there
Vermont Maple Fest April 25 - 27, 2014 Take me there
Vermont Sheep & Wool Festival April 25 - 27, 2014 Take me there

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