SANDWICH – Kaylie Cartwright was born and raised in Sandwich, and she looks forward to the weekend after Labor Day every year because that’s when the Sandwich Fair takes place.
The 132nd annual Sandwich Fair, 15730 Pratt Road in Sandwich, will run through Sunday, Sept. 8.
“We love coming to the fair. We make sure to attend the fair every day,” Cartwright said. “The fair is an important family tradition for us.”
Her 4-year-old daughter, Lucy’s, favorite part of the fair is the rides, but Cartwright loves the food.
“My favorite is the Crab Shack, where we buy the bacon cheddar fries and cherry limeade,” Cartwright said. “The food, the rides, the animals, we love everything. That’s why we come back year after year.”
This year’s event features agricultural exhibits, commercial vendors, carnival rides, antique farm machinery, arts and crafts demonstrations and culinary competitions.
The fair not only will offer carnival rides and games for entertainment, but also a diverse lineup of live entertainment and events, including National Tractor Pullers Association-sanctioned truck pulls, NTPA-sanctioned tractor pulls on Saturday and demolition derbies on Sunday.
Country music star Scotty McCreery performed Friday night with special guest Jimmie Allen.
General admission tickets for the fair are available at the entrance gate. Admission costs $10 for adults and $6 for children ages 6 to 12. Entry for ages 5 and younger is free. Parking is free.
Although many aspects of the fair remain the same each year, one vendor, Open Door Rehabilitation Center, decided to shake up its items this year.
To celebrate its 50th year at the fair, the lemon shake-up stand is selling a special souvenir 32-ounce cup for $5 that allows for $2 refills.
The stand also is selling 16-ounce lemon shake-ups and sugar-free shake-ups for $2, and bottled water and slices of Rosati’s pizza.
The Open Door stand can be found directly behind the main bleachers along the track, across from the main event ticket office.
Another new addition to this year’s fair is the FFA petting zoo barn. The new red metal pole barn replaces the wooden FFA blue-and-gold painted building that was more than 50 years old.
“The new barn is much more open, there’s more room for people to walk by and for the animals and it lets in more light so it’s not as dark as the old one,” said Grace Wood, second vice president of the Newark FFA. “It’s easier for people to walk through and see and pet the animals.”
Wood visits the fair every year with her family. As a young child, she always looked forward to the FFA petting zoo.
“I’ve always loved the animals, but I also love the live music, the food and riding the rides,” Wood said. “Everything about the fair is great. The week of the fair is my favorite time of the year.”
Brynn Schneider of Sterling attends the fair every year to show her family’s dairy cows.
“We go to between five to eight fairs a year, and the Sandwich Fair is our favorite fair,” Schneider said. “I love meeting new people and talking to them about farming. Everyone always asks questions. I enjoy teaching others about dairy cows and how important farming is.”
For information about the Sandwich Fair, visit www.sandwichfair.com.