It all started when…
The Franklin County Fair can date all the way back to 1854 when it was considered the Franklin County Agricultural Fair and was organized by the Agricultural Society of Franklin County. Then, in 1868, the Franklin County Farmer’s and Mechanics Association took over and changed the name to Franklin County Fair. This fair continued through the 1880’s.
It wasn’t until 1914 that another fair was held; this time being called the Harvest Home Picnic and Farmers’ Picnic and being held on the Red Bridge Park. The Picnic became increasingly popular with more people attending each year. Before the Picnic in 1922, it was voted to change the name back to Franklin County Fair. For the next 12 years, the fair grew in size with more animals and exhibits being added. The community event came to an end in the 1930’s.
Shortly after the fair ended, people began forming Sportmen’s Clubs. The county clubs banded together to hold a carnival to raise money. Other groups gained interest and in 1961, the 4-H Dairy Clubs started holding their round-ups and a dairy barn was built in 1962. The carnival steadily grew and it was decided that the name Franklin County Fair would be adopted again.
The Franklin County Fair, as we know it today, has been in commission since 1965. There was always something new being added to the schedule, most of which still exist today. The fair continued to grow and by the 1980’s it was booming. Things were looking great until the late 2000’s when the economy took a downturn. Attendance began to dwindle and the fair began to struggle. Everyone was looking for ways to help the fair.
2015 marked a special year for the fair; it was the 50th Anniversary. Many special events took place and a special anniversary book was printed. The fair office was dedicated to Gerald W. Reichard and the dairy cattle barn no.1 was dedicated to John Shearer. This celebration began the upturn of the Franklin County Fair.
New board members were elected and new ideas were presented for the fair. Everyone’s goal was to revive the Franklin County Fair and make it what it once was. Many big things took place, and it worked. 2016 began the hard work and dedication to turn the fair around. The “New and Improved” Franklin County Fair was well on it’s way to being a staple in the community again. Now, today, the fair continues to improve and people are beginning to attend and enjoy the fair again.