By Hayleigh Gowans
The Great New York State Fair is upon us, and from Aug. 23 to Sept. 4 thousand of people will flock daily Syracuse to celebrate the culture of New York.
The celebration of culture through fairs and festivals has been around since the beginning of organized civilization. They are a great way to showcase the foods, tools, technologies, art and goods of groups of people, and have the ability to educate on a wide variety of topics in an enjoyable setting.
I was researching the history of state fairs in the United States and found a comprehensive history of the Great New York State Fair at nysfair.ny.gov/about/fair-history. Our own state fair in Syracuse is the home to the first-ever state-wide gathering of this type in the United States in 1841. The fair was held in other cities throughout Upstate New York over the following few decades before it took permanent residence in Syracuse in 1890. The New York State Fair has been held annually since then, except for from 1942 to 1947 due to World War II. Over the years, it has grown in size and attendance, and numerous construction projects have been undertaken at the fairgrounds.
Displaying livestock for judging, a variety of foods, displays of technology and goods, the Midway, arts and live entertainment have become staples in state fairs across the country.
Interestingly, it was a bit difficult to find lists of fair/festival etiquette available online. I did find some various blogs with tips, but no official list of etiquette and manners to keep in mind. There are, however, a list of rules of conduct for the New York State Fair, which can be found at nysfair.ny.gov/your-visit/rules-of-conduct.
Here are some rules and pieces of etiquette to keep in mind if you end up going to the state fair this year:
Overall, the state fair can be a fun and informative trip for people of all ages. It will be crowded but if everyone is polite and patient, we can all have a good time celebrating our culture.
If you have any questions or to suggest topics for discussion, please email me at email@example.com. Until next time, mind your modern manners!
I am a reporter for the Eagle Bulletin and Cazenovia Republican at Eagle News. I report on topics ranging from town and village government, business, news and features. I am a 2014 graduate of the Roy H. Park School of Communications and have a degree in Journalism and a minor in Psychology.