Skowhegan State Fair celebrates 200 years

SKOWHEGAN, Maine (WABI) - The Skowhegan State Fair opened the gates Thursday for its 200th year.

"The fair has been here a long time. 1818. Skowhegan wasn't even in the state of Maine. It was still Massachusetts, and it's just been continuous since 1818, and all these people through all these years have helped this Fair continue on its course," said Adverstising Manager, Denny Morin.

200 years. That's how long the Skowhegan State Fair has been up and running.

The gates opened on Thursday for a 10-day run.

In its 200th year, the fair promises classic rides, harness racing, live music, and of course, animals.

"We have a lot of agricultural shows. We have the 4-H involved, sheep shows, horse shows, tractor pulls, horse pulls throughout the day, each and every day," explained Morin.

New this year, children under 11 get in free.

Organizers say they expect thousands to come through the gates this year for the longest running agricultural fair in the country.

"We try and adapt to what people would like to see, what they haven't seen. We have a lot of music entertainment throughout the day, we have a magician throughout the day. We have a Flores Thrill high-wire act throughout the day,' said Morin.

Back again after a few years off, the Hight Family will show off their collection of antique and classic cars.

Over 50 cars are on display ranging in years from 1915 to 2008.

"Everyone in Skowhegan and all of us are very grateful for all that they do, and getting the cars in here is a huge attraction that a lot of people really like," explained Tucker Watson.

In case of rainy weather, there are always indoor activities like bingo.

Steven Spaulding is the Commander of American Legion Post 16 in Skowhegan.

He and his crew will be running the charity game all week.

"It's a good fundraiser for the veterans which we support the community and veterans, number one, and then children's' programs in the community, and elderly stuff like that," said Spaulding.

Organizer say the fair would not have been kept alive if it weren't for the hard-working generations before them. They say they hope the traditions continue for another 200 years.

For a full schedule of events visit: http://skowheganstatefair.com/.