Greene County Fair: 5 things to know about the ‘oldest fair west of the Alleghenies’

The Greene County Fair, a week of carnival rides, harness racing, 4-H exhibitions and more, is underway. 

Here are five things to know about the historic fairgrounds: 

1. On the move. The first Greene County Fair was held in and around the county’s courthouse in 1839. The fairgrounds moved several times to larger sites during the following decades to accommodate its growth. 

>> Your guide to weeks of fair fun all summer long

The Xenia Campfire Girls make yarn poodles to enter in a competition at the 1961 Greene County Fair. DAYTON DAILY NEWS ARCHIVE

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2. Double the fun. Two fairs were held in Greene County during 1884 as a result of a dispute over location. Residents of Jamestown believed the fair should be held on Xenia-Jamestown Pike, while Xenia residents felt the fair should be held closer to the county seat. 

>> What to eat, see and do at the Ohio State Fair

3. Historical significance. According to the Greene County Fairgrounds & Expo Center website, the annual event held in Xenia is the oldest fair west of the Alleghenies. 

4. Racing on Main Street. The early fairs were made up of plowing contests, vegetables and flowers, displays of products made on spinning wheels, and a horse race along Main Street. 

>> PHOTOS: Montgomery County Fair 2018

9-21-00 -- Tornado damage at the Greene County Fairgrounds. (TY GREENLEES)

5. Path of destruction. In 2000, a tornado destroyed 17 buildings and uprooted a number of large trees at the fairgrounds. The following year the fair opened with new steel buildings.

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