Montgomery County Fair begins today: What to know

For the 172nd summer, the Montgomery County Fair will open its gates Sunday for a week of animal showings, tractor pulls, demolition derbies, and of course — food.

The fair is once again offering all its traditional attractions, with rides, livestock shows and competitions, daily live music, and a professional rodeo. Fairgoers can also enjoy a new petting zoo, a new act from the Cincinnati Circus, and, from Wednesday through Saturday, an “hands-on” firefighter’s show to teach children fire safety and what to do during emergencies.

“We’re hoping for some outstanding attendance” said Montgomery County Fair Board President Mark Jimison, “we’re hoping that the weather cooperates and we can get a good crowd in there, because we really put a lot of effort to make a good show”

The fair will run noon to 10 p.m. on Sunday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 10 a.m. to 11 p.m Friday and Saturday.

The fair is expecting 35 food vendors, serving a variety of tastes and cuisines, said Jimison. Vendors include Dayton food truck The Messy Meatball and Cleveland-based restaurant Melt Bar and Grilled, which specializes in gourmet grilled cheese.

Young people in the county will get to show off various agricultural and creative projects throughout the fair. Children in 4-H clubs, FAA chapters, or Girl Scout chapters get the opportunity to display and receive judges’ feedback on shows and projects.

John Friedline, a member of the Montgomery County Fair Board, says he’s looking forward to all the different livestock shows, where county residents, students, and even people from out of town can show off their livestock and compete.

“We do appreciate people coming in from out of county” said Friedline, “and we have junior shows for the 4-H kids.”

Rebecca Supinger, Extension Educator for 4-H development at Ohio State University, said 4-H clubs throughout the county will be participating in judging and fair activities this and next week.

“A goal of 4-H is to create leadership opportunities so our youth become contributing citizens in the future” said Supinger, who added that “citizenship is an important component of the 4-H development program.”

4-H students can practice leadership and citizenship through club officer positions and by presenting their projects to judges. They also show off their displays and projects at the fair, giving them the opportunity to show both judges and visitors what they learned.

Fairgoers will have the opportunity to view shows and presentations from both 4-H and non 4-H students throughout the fair.

“Being a 4-H father myself, we would always try to be in the barn during the busy time where families would come through” said Jimison. “That was always great fun for me, and I know it is for most of the 4-H-er’s and their parents”

The Montgomery County Fair Board also offers the Montgomery County Agricultural Society Scholarship, which awards $1,200 to two residents of Montgomery County currently enrolled in trade school or a degree-granting program.

Since 2018, the fair has been held at 645 Infirmary Road, just south of U.S. 35, after over a century at the old fairgrounds south of Downtown Dayton. If the July heat becomes too much to handle, fairgoers can cool off in the air-conditioned Building No. 1.

Rides, which are being provided by Big O Amusement, will be open from 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 10. p.m., except on Sunday, when they will open at 12 p.m.

A list of shows, events, and performers, as well as guidelines for attendance, can be found in the Montgomery County Fair book on the fair’s website. Tickets are $10 Sunday through Thursday, and $15 Friday and Saturday after 4 p.m. Children under $6 attend for free, and senior citizens, first responders, and veterans get a discount on Wednesday. Parking at the fairgrounds is free.

How to go

What: Montgomery County Fair

When: Sunday to Saturday; The fair will be open from noon to 10 p.m. on July 7; 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on July 8, 9, 10 and 11; and 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. on July 12 and 13.

Where: Montgomery County Fairgrounds, 645 Infirmary Road, Dayton

Details: Enjoy tractor pulls, demolition derbies, rides, games, food and more.

Cost: $10 Sunday through Thursday. $15 Friday and Saturday after 4 p.m.

More info:

Other County Fairs

July 15-20: Warren

July 19-26 : Clark

July 21-27: Butler

July 27-Aug. 3: Preble

July 28-Aug. 3 Greene

Aug. 9-15: Miami

Aug. 16-24: Darke

About the Author