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Ohio State Fair Underway - At Nearly Empty Fairgrounds

Dan Konik
The 144-foot Giant Slide, a fixture at the Ohio State Fair since 1969, stands empty at this year's fair.

The Ohio State Fair is open – but there are no rides, no food vendors, no games, and no attendees.

This year’s fair is limited to livestock and educational competitions.  

The Ohio Expo Commission decided in April not have a full fair because of the potential cost of COVID compliance and the impact that would have on both health and ticket sales.

But fair assistant manager Alicia Shoults said they preserved the junior fair component.

“It’s something that really allows us to celebrate agriculture, but also limits the fair in scope," Shoults said. "So we’re able to spread out the animal shows, make it open only to Ohio exhibitors, and make sure that we allow proper social distancing to ensure that it’s a safe event possible for those who are here participating.”

The Ohio State Fair was completely canceled last year, for the first time in 75 years.

But nearly all counties plan to hold fairs as scheduled. Thirteen fairs have already completed their runs.
Copyright 2021 The Statehouse News Bureau. To see more, visit The Statehouse News Bureau.