102 Years of the Fair

Updated: Jul 12

Boundary County Fair Takes Guests Around the World in Five Days By Taylor Shillam

Boundary County Fair

Fair season is fast approaching in Bonners Ferry. The Boundary County Fair invites the community to travel Around the World in 5 Days this August, as it returns for its 102nd year!

The Boundary County Fair will be set up from August 9 through 13, bringing the family friendly fun it’s been known to offer for over a century.

The fair’s timeline has expanded for 2022 and is set to begin a day early. “Normally, we begin on the Wednesday of fair week, but this year, we’ll start on a Tuesday,” explained Fair Administrator Jodi Stoddard. “This will allow more time for judging, and for all the fun activities we have planned throughout the week.”

Stoddard shared this year’s theme, “Around the World in Five Days,” was selected by the fair board. Vendors, 4-H members, and other event participants are encouraged to decorate the barns and booths to highlight the global theme.

“The vendors, barns and exhibits will feature a world-wide theme from the comfort of your own backyard fairgrounds,” fair organizers have announced, as they look forward to adding a “foreign flair” to the 2022 fair.

“As always, the Boundary County Fair is free,” Stoddard emphasized. “That’s free parking, free entry, and free entertainment.” The fair has been a free event since its beginning in 1920.

“We offer entertainment, games and contests that everyone will enjoy,” the Boundary County Fair promises. Every year, the fair offers visitors of all ages a selection of family friendly attractions and entertainment, including games, contests, and barns filled with country-grown livestock.

Businesses throughout the community are also invited to decorate their windows along with the fair theme. Awards are provided to the best-decorated vendor booth, as well as the best business window, encouraging community-wide participation in the fun.

“Our fair T-shirt has been designed by local artist Amy Tye,” Stoddard shared. Tye won the 2022 T-shirt design contest, judged by the Fair Board in the spring. The commemorative shirts will be available for purchase at the fair office closer to the date of the event.

“The Food Court will again be packed with the best food vendors our county has to offer,” Stoddard shared. She looks forward to the wide selection of food vendors that will include Two Tones, Jakes Landing, Selle Valley Creamery, Moyie Shriners, Gardner Grinds, Maria’s Hawaiian Snow and Just Donuts.

This year’s entertainment will include daily magic shows, a “funny photo booth,” and a free concert on Saturday night.

With a large-scale event like the Boundary County Fair, support from the community is always greatly appreciated. “We are always looking for volunteers,” Stoddard shared. “Without our valued volunteers, there wouldn’t be a fair.”

Volunteers can lend assistance with setting up the event, open class displays, judging fair entries, and more.

“The fair is only possible because of volunteers,” their new website reads. “Did you know that for 11 months of the year, the fairgrounds are run by two part-time employees?” They also have the behind-the-scenes support of five fair board members and a “small army of volunteer superintendents and judges”—truly a small army to make a lot of magic for the local community. Extra help is needed as some steady volunteers begin to transition out of their work with the fair.

“We really need some of the younger community members to start volunteering, since many of our helpers who have been doing this for decades are retiring,” Stoddard encouraged. “It’s easy and fun, and we promise you will develop great new friendships in the process. Just pop in or call the office, and let’s find a fun place to put your skills to use.”

Support in the form of donating time and talent (just a few hours a year makes all the difference), to donating a bench or a picnic table, is what has helped the Boundary County Fair run successfully for over a century.

The fair’s online event schedule is regularly updated for events that are open to the public, and the Boundary County Fair has made it easier than ever to follow along with event updates and volunteer opportunities.

With their newly created website, BoundaryCountyFairgrounds.com, and the existing Boundary County Fair Facebook page, fair administrators will continue to post the event schedule, copies of the Fair Book, and more updates as August 13 approaches.

To enhance the fair experience, community members can pick up the Fair Book, which lists the events and entertainment lineup for the fair, along with coloring pages and activities for kids.

Pick up your copy of the Fair Book at the fairgrounds office, and keep a look out for local businesses showing support in their “Around the World” theme displays as the Boundary County Fair approaches for another year of fun for the entire community!


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