Jefferson County Fair wraps up a week of fun and community camaraderie this weekend

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KEARNEYSVILLE, W.Va (WDVM) — The Jefferson County Fair is in full swing. It started in 1953 at the old Shenandoah Downs raceway and is still going strong.

Farming. Industry. Community service. It all comes together here at the Jefferson County Fair.

Loretta Shade has been involved with 4-H since she was young. And this week, with long days of fun-filled activities at the Jefferson County Fair, she sees friends and neighbors actively helping others.

“Most people do community service projects,” said Shade. “It may be feeding the homeless, doing things for the veterans, the elderly, young children, foster homes, projects here at the fairgrounds — just about anything you can think of.”

Talk about family fun. Just ask Amanda Johnson, the WVU Extension Service 4-H agent.

“The fair is a way to get out to spend some time with family. We know important being outside right now is. So all this is open and really airy so families can get out. They can socialize with each other. They can ride the carnival rides. They can see horses,” said Johnson.

Johnson said the fair is great for the local economy.

“There are a whole bunch of local businesses here having vendors in each of the exhibit buildings and there are many people from all across the community,” said Johnson.

For Loretta Shade, this is the week to showcase an activity as meaningful as any other in her life.

“I can’t speak highly enough of 4-H,” Shade said. “I was in 4-H. My children were 4-H members and now my grandchildren are 4-H members, and Jefferson County has one of the strongest programs.”

4-H aside, there’s also the bubble gum blowing contest, tractor pulls, marshmallow eating contest, stage performances, marching bands, corn eating contests, beef judging, water balloon and hay bale toss, sheep judging, horse drill team, bake auction, cow chip bingo and more.

The fair continues through this Saturday, August 28. This Satuday is one of the highlights of the Jefferson County Fair — the animal auction. Gates open at 9 a.m., and there will be karaoke Saturday night at 8 p.m. in the show barn. It will be a great way to start winding down the summer season.

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