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chairoplane carnival ride at a state fair sunset

As the summer winds down and we head into fall, exploring one of the upcoming town and county fairs throughout the state is a great family-friendly way to enjoy being outdoors while discovering how agriculture in Massachusetts works. Petting zoos, livestock displays, amusement rides, and treats like cotton candy will delight children while parents will appreciate the cultural and educational benefits of the attractions. Each event offers hours of fun and entertainment, and there are a few that boast particularly unique experiences…

If taking part in a long-running tradition sounds appealing, the Three County Fair in Northampton is one of the oldest  in the country, with roots running all the way back to 1818. This 195-year-old fair highlights agriculture, education, and science, and provides visitors the opportunity to familiarize themselves with locally produced goods and services and livestock, and experience unique programs and events such as magic shows, demolition derbies, and pig races. Uncover everything this western Massachusetts fair has to showcase from August 30th through September 2nd.

One of the largest and most recognizable fairs in the country, The Big E (also known as the Eastern States Exposition), is a September staple and the only fair in America to feature multiple states participating. Life-size replicas of each New England state’s original statehouse line the Avenue of States, along which fairgoers can stroll while snacking on a wide variety of edible indulgences. Visitors will enjoy agricultural exhibits, concerts, performances, and parades, while seeing how Massachusetts and other states contribute to the region’s economy and culture. Enjoy two fun-filled weeks of events, shows, and exhibits, from September 14th through the 29th in West Springfield.

If you haven’t gotten your fill of fair fun just yet, the Topsfield Fair returns to Topsfield October 4th through the 14th. Boasting the largest beekeeping and honey show in North America, this eastern Massachusetts extravaganza promotes agricultural activities such as farming and raising livestock, and educates the public on their importance. It showcases a wide variety of events and exhibits, including arts and crafts, cooking and baking contests, and a vibrant flower show.

There’s something for everyone at one of the dozen-plus fairs happening in the state in the next few months. Check one out and experience the fun of learning about Massachusetts agriculture together!


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