Carroll County Times
Carroll County News

Steeped in history, Carroll County kicks off 125th 4-H & FFA Fair this weekend

Crafts, entertainment, ice cream, fireworks and farm animals will be on hand at the 125th Carroll County 4-H and FFA Fair, which opens this weekend.

The weeklong fair, which has been held since 1897, runs through Aug. 5 with activities at the Carroll County Agriculture Center, 706 Agricultural Center Drive in Westminster. Admission is free, but parking is $5 after 4 p.m. Parking will be free all day on Sunday.


According to a history published in the 1997 Carroll County Fair Guide, the current version of the fair traces its roots to a picnic held Aug. 14, 1897, at the Otterdale Schoolhouse, in Taneytown. The fair moved to Westminster in 1954, to what is now known as the Carroll County Agriculture Center.


“For 125 years now, the 4-H & FFA Fair has been cherished by the communities of Carroll County, and we’re planning on going big this year,” the fair website states. “A lot has changed over the years, but the fair has always remained a constant positive force in the lives of residents across the county. The fair offers many opportunities for our youth to showcase their skills and projects.”

Katie Weishaar, a volunteer with the fair, said this year’s event will combine old traditions with new activities.

“I feel like the fair is always something to look forward to,” she said. “We’re wrapping up the summer, and it’s a time for people to get together.”

The fair officially starts at 5 p.m. Friday with the tractor and truck pull. Admission to this event is $15, with children 8 and under free. There will be lawn seating only, so visitors are encouraged to bring a chair or blanket, the fair website states.

Family Fun Fest will be held at 7 p.m. Saturday, in the activity tent. Registration is at 6 p.m. The event is free and will include a baby contest, pig calling, milkshake mustache, pie eating contest, and new for this year is the best mullet hairstyle contest. The event is free.

Finally, starting off fair week will be a tractor parade at 10 a.m. Sunday. The parade will depart the Carroll County Agriculture Center, turn left onto Gist Road, left onto South Center Street, right on East Main Street, crossing over Route 97 to Old Westminster Pike, right onto Arnold Road, right on Hook Road, crossing over Route 32 Washington Road, right onto Gist Road, and ending back at the Carroll County Agricultural Center.


The largest fundraiser for the fair is the cake auction. Bakers from throughout Carroll County enter their baked goods, with prizes awarded to the best tasty delights. Visitors bid on the baked items, with the money going back to the fair. The cake auction starts at 7 p.m. on Aug. 4.

Senior Day is also held on Aug. 4. It’s a day set aside for senior citizens to showcase their talents. Exhibits should be entered that day from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. in Blizzard Hall. Judging of exhibits is from 9 to 11:30 a.m.

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Senior exhibits will be open to the public from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Aug 4., and from 9 to 11 a.m. on Aug. 5. Music by Riverview Mirror will be playing under the big white tent from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. Refreshments will be served.

Children’s Day is Aug. 2. It’s the day when the 4-H clubs, magicians, music, games and local agencies take over the Buck Miller Arena. The day will also include crafts, food and ice cream for the children.

To celebrate the fair’s 125th anniversary, fireworks will be held at 9:30 p.m. on July 31.

No outside food and drinks are allowed.


For a day-by-day schedule and more information on the fair, go to