Healdsburg Fair is Coming in Hot!
By: Nicki Richardson
Photo by: Tracy Bjornstad
The Healdsburg Future Farmers Country Fair, or HFFCF, which has been a small-town tradition for over 70 years, may be able to be held in person once again after the heartbreaking cancelation of the event the previous year. First founded in 1950, the fair has called Recreational Park it’s home as many young people exhibit their animals for the duration of the event. Generally, the fair happens on Memorial Day weekendand is a four day event which includes events like kids day, the junior livestock show, and activities for people of all ages. Many people from all over Sonoma County come to grab their share of the many food booths, games, and bounce houses for all ages.
2020 was the first time in many decades that the fair was unable to happen due to the health concerns associated with Covid-19 as it was just starting to slowly shut down life as we knew it. For the exhibitors as well as residents of the town, this was heartbreaking news to hear. But, going into 2021, the fair is fully preparing to have an in-person event.
As the state of California slowly reopens after almost a year in lockdown, many livestock shows have also started to kick back up and people are beginning to feel safer while attending these. Many fairs had to make the tragic decision to cancel just weeks before the fair, but that is only making them even more determined to safely hold them.
While this should be good news and it is for the many local 4-H and FFA members, it may not be for the common fairgoers. There has not been an official statement on how the fair will be run yet or what will be included for it as far as attractions, but one thing is bound to happen, and that is the livestock show. The 2021 HFFCF may not be able to host the regular food booths and games as years past, however, they are aiming to have some sort of in-person show for the many exhibitors to show and sell their livestock.
Although this would be different, not having the general public participate in the fun of the fair, it still allows exhibitors to show off their projects that they have been working on for many months and be able to sell them. They then get the money that they deserve from their projects, which really is the main purpose of fairs.
For many people, raising and selling their market animals is the best way to earn money to pay for things such as their college education or a car. The livestock aspect of fairs is really why fairs across the country exist today, so although we may be missing out on the food, this small town tradition should still live on.