With summer slowly creeping up, Farm Bureau members are adding county fairs to the long list of things COVID-19 has impacted — or just plain wrecked. Social distancing requirements, access to volunteers and technology, and remaining fiscally solvent are all factors county fair boards are struggling with as they consider their 2020 events.
Traditionally, many county Farm Bureaus have supported these annual summertime youth events through various opportunities including trophy sponsorships, hosting educational events for the community or serving as show and auction volunteers.
To date, a handful of counties have already made the difficult decision to cancel their fair, while others continue planning as best they can — in some cases moving to a virtual show format. As your county fair boards have these discussions, consider reaching out to your fair coordinator or fair board president to ask how your county Farm Bureau might be able to help.
Given that nobody’s ever conducted a fair during a global pandemic — and many have not hosted virtual events — there could be needs never before considered. An open brainstorming session may be helpful.
Working directly with your county fair board is an opportunity to strengthen your partnership and allows the county Farm Bureau to meet a very real need within your community.
If your county Farm Bureau is meeting a need at the county fair, tell us about it! Contact Katie Eisenberger, MFB high school and collegiate programs specialist.