PROVIDENCE BAY—The days are getting shorter, the nights cooler and the Providence Bay Fair, this year marking 135 years, is upon us once again—a sure sign that back to school is right around the corner.
The Providence Bay Agriculture Society has been planning the Fair for months and is pleased to announce some new events to the always great lineup of family fun.
The events actually kicked off last week with an addition to the race for Family Fun Trophy supremacy with a hay bale structure competition. There were four entries in the new event, with the winning structure to see points gained toward the Family Fun event. By Sunday, the family with the most points wins. Take a drive around Providence Bay and Spring Bay for a look at these great hay bale installations.
On Friday, August 17, the exhibit hall opens for entries beginning at 8:30 am, closing by 11 am for judging.
At 5:30 pm, the fair officially gets underway with the gates opening to the midway.
“New this year is a Kids Zone sponsored by Wahl Water,” said Agriculture Society President Dawn Dawson. “It’s a 40×80 foot section that include activities such as a hay bale maze, obstacle course, tent with colouring stations, facepainting and a cornbox (not to be confused with a sandbox—they’re different!).”
The Glendale Pony Rides and Petting Zoo are back again, as is the Light Horse Show which takes place at 6 pm.
At 7 pm the exhibit hall opens to the public followed by the opening ceremonies at 7:30 pm inside the arena with everyone’s favourite emcee Norm Morell and the highly anticipated Fair Ambassador Competition getting underway at 8 pm. This year, there are five young women vying to represent Providence Bay: April Torkopoulos, Carissa Holliday, Janessa Lee, Megan Moore and Trinity Leeson.
The hilarious, and oh so messy, pie eating competition takes to the stage at 8:30 pm followed by the musical stylings of The Islanders.
The exhibit hall closes at 10 pm.
On Saturday, August 18, start the day with a delicious pancake breakfast at the community centre before getting a prize spot for the parade. This year’s parade theme is ‘Manitoulin Fantasy Island,’ and gets underway at 11:30 am.
The gates and exhibit hall open at 9 am with the midway open for business at noon.
“We’re having a tractor show this year,” Ms. Dawson shared. “We’re really trying to get back to the grass roots of an agriculture fair. We’re excited.”
Ms. Dawson urged anyone with a tractor they’d like to show off to bring it the day of the event, which runs from noon to 5 pm. “There will be People’s Choice and Judge’s Choice awards,” the ag president added.
At 1 pm, the sound of the Sudbury and District Pipe band will surely draw a crowd followed by live entertainment from River Valley from 2 to 4 pm.
On Saturday afternoon, fair goers can also look forward to face painting at 1 pm, children’s races at 2 pm, the Family Fun Trophy tug-of-war and obstacle course at 3 pm, all at the Kids Zone, and the heavy draft horse pull at 3 pm.
After a break for supper, head back to the arena for ‘Manitoulin’s Got Talent’ at 7:30 pm.
On Sunday, August 19, motocross registration will be held from 6:30 to 8 am with the races getting underway at 10 am.
At 9 am the gates and Kids Zone open, followed by the exhibit hall opening its doors at 10 am.
The midway, petting zoo and pony rides are all open for business at 11:30 am, which is also when the Family Fun Trophy paper boat races begin.
At 1 pm, Taw Connors, son of the legendary Stompin’ Tom Connors, will provide over two hours of good music and great tales of growing up with a dad like Stompin’ Tom.
“We’ve already had calls from as far away as Sudbury and Midland and are really looking forward to the show,” Ms. Dawson said.
The single horse pull gets underway from 1 pm, as do the turtle races (as always, you must provide your own turtle).
The final Family Fun Trophy event, the round bale push, takes place at 2:30 pm with the winning family announced at 3:30 pm.
Friday admission is: adults, $5; children 6-12, $2; and children under 5, free. Weekend passes are adults, $20; children 6-12, $10; and children under five, free.
For the full schedule of events visit providencebayfiar.com or see Pages 16-17 in this newspaper.