The Beaver Community Fair began in 1928 as a school project emphasizing local agriculture and home economics. It didn’t take long for the entire community to come together to celebrate, enhance, and exhibit the tastes and treasures of their beloved rural lifestyle.
Now, 91 years later, the tradition is going strong, and while the fair has blossomed into an annual event with a variety of activities, agriculture remains its central focus.
Kathy Weller, fundraising chair and spokesperson for the Beaver Community Fair, who also serves as a 4-H educator for Snyder County, said the fair has become a tradition for many families.
“We have seen generations of youth come through the livestock portion of the fair,” she said. Great-grandchildren are now showing animals, just as their great-grandparents did.
“Parents realized what fun they had, what a great experience they had, so they’re getting their kids involved,” Weller said.
She continues to see an increase in the number of livestock exhibitors each year; this year, there are nearly 125.
She is sure that same tradition and growth is happening in other exhibits at the fair, which include home and dairy, apiary, evergreen, fruits and nuts, grains, floral, vegetables, arts and crafts, and photography.
Good news for fairgoers this year: those exhibits will be open an extra day. This year, fair officials are holding its entry days earlier — Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. — which means the exhibits will now be open for viewing beginning Monday evening.
A new addition this year is a mini-mod tractor pull.
The fair also offers a variety of other tractor pull competitions, farm competitions, kids’ games, midway rides, and plenty of entertainment.
Rick K and the Allnighters — a favorite for many years among the fairgoers — will perform again this year on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. Weller said the other performances scheduled for the week are all new to the fair this year and represent a variety of genres. Popular Christian rock band Sanctus Real will be performing on stage at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 19.
Mark Graalman, drummer for Sanctus Real, said he and his bandmates are looking forward to returning to Pennsylvania, where they have played quite often over the years. The band is also no stranger to performing at fairs like this one.
“I always enjoy the festivities at these kinds of events,” Graalman said. “It’s a fun family atmosphere and the food is enjoyable!”
Sanctus Real will be performing some of their popular, classic songs, such as “Lead Me,” “Forgiven” and “Promises”. But the audience will also hear some songs from their new record, just released Aug. 30, including “Confidence” and “Unstoppable God”.
Graalman said his desire for each performance is that all would be encouraged with a powerful message: “My hope is that we all, band and audience alike, would leave every show reminded of God’s love for each of us and just how special the calling and purpose on every individual really is.”
A vespers service at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday will include music by Dale Keller, and other performances for the week are Shannon with Tom and Randy at 7 p.m. Monday; Kenton Sitch Band at 7 p.m. Tuesday; Swamp Root at 7 p.m. Sept. 20; and Mylee Rose at 7 p.m. and Hudson Moore at 8 p.m. on Sept. 21.
Weller said each year approximately 15,000 people attend the fair, which utilizes approximately 25 acres of land in Beaver Springs.
She credits the dedication of volunteers and the community for its long history and success.