The wholesome fun of the old-time county fair is back. The Long Island Fair, at 156 years old and one of America's oldest agricultural festivals, will return for its annual fall run. This year the fair will be held from Oct. 9 - 12 and 15 - 18. (Note: The fair is open Monday, Oct. 12) at Old Bethpage Village Restoration.
Exciting new additions to this year's Long Island Fair include the "Indian River Olde Time Lumberjack Show," an operating replica of the historic Maryland Carousel, and a new Livestock Building.
The Lumberjack Show takes a journey into the past by presenting the skills of the old-time lumberjacks in an entertaining and educational format. The featured lumberjacks have won four world championships and 17 state and national championships in sawing and over 40 state and national championships in chopping, axe throwing and log rolling, and are sure to astound visitors as they demonstrate these extraordinary skills.
The original Maryland Carousel is featured in the upcoming Disney movie Beloved, starring Oprah Winfrey. The replica of this delightful children's merry-go-round from the late 1800s will be providing rides. More than two dozen Long Island volunteers have worked tirelessly to craft this accurate re-creation of what may be North America's oldest existing carousel.
The new 30 x 100 foot Livestock Building was made possible by a donation from Jeanette H. Campbell in memory of her husband Howard H. Campbell, a former Nassau County Agricultural Agent.
The fair is family entertainment at its best. For the children there will be pony, elephant and horse drawn wagon and carousel rides, as well as magic shows, puppet shows, jugglers and a menagerie. The children of today will have the unique opportunity of experiencing the excitement of participating in games as they were played 150 years ago, and frolic in a play fort of straw.
Performing their 19th century repertoires will be the Hutchinson Family Singers and the Old Bethpage Brass Band. Visitors are invited to tap their toes to the tunes of the fiddler and join the village dancers as they perform the popular dances of the 1800s. A phrenologist will perform the amazing analysis of personality by reading the bumps on one's head. Visitors will have the opportunity to enjoy traditional skills such as spinning and participate in contests of agricultural skills by trying their hands at crosscut sawing and corn husking. A ploughing contest on Sundays gives visitors a chance to steer a walking plough pulled by a team of farm horses.
Thousands of entries in vegetable, flower, domestic arts and hobbies categories, as well as prize-winning livestock and poultry, will be judged and awarded ribbons and prizes. Children under 13 years of age compete in a special Juniors category.
Championship games of the village's nationally recognized Old Time Base Ball program are scheduled for both weekends of the fair and on the Monday holiday, as a culmination to the season of competition between 10 teams of 1866 and 1887 rules baseball leagues.
Admission is $8 for adults and $5 for children ages 5 - 12, disabled, resident senior citizens, resident volunteer ambulance corps, firefighters, auxiliary police and veterans. Parking is free. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. Free shuttle buses take visitors from auxiliary parking areas to the village entrance. Disabled patrons and senior citizens may take a tram from the admissions area to the fairgrounds.
The Long Island Fair is held in the 19th century setting of Old Bethpage Village Restoration, which re-creates a farming community of Civil War era Long Island. The fair is presented by the Nassau County Department of Recreation and Parks in conjunction with the Agricultural Society of Queens, Nassau and Suffolk and the Friends for Long Island's Heritage.
Old Bethpage Village Restoration is located on Round Swamp Road in Old Bethpage, one mile south of the Long Island Expressway Exit #48. For more information, call 572-8401.
10-2 - Races for Children
10:00 - Traditional Music
10:30 - Great Wizard of the North Lumberjack Show
11:00 - Puppet Show, Juggling Performance
11:30 - Great Wizard of the North
Noon - Puppet Show, Lumberjack Show
12:30 - Great Wizard of the North, Juggling Performance
1:00 - Puppet Show, Traditional Music
1:30 - Great Wizard of the North
2:00 - Phrenology Show, Lumberjack Show, Juggling Performance
2:30 - Music
3:00 - Great Wizard of the North
3:30 - Phrenology Show
10:30 - Great Wizard of the North, Races for Children
11:00 - Puppet Show, Brass Band Concert
11:30 - Phrenology Show, Corn Husking Contest, Races for Children, Lumberjack Show
Noon - Hutchinson Family Singers, Traditional Music, Juggling Performance
12:30 - Great Wizard of the North, Crosscut Sawing Contest
1:00 - Puppet Show, Traditional Music, Brass Band Contest, Contra Dancing
1:30 - 4 - Races for Children
1:30 - Phrenology Show, Lumberjack Show
2:00 - Hutchinson Family Singers, Juggling Performance, Traditional Music, Crosscut Sawing Contest, Ploughing Contest (Sundays Only)
2:30 - Great Wizard of the North, Contra Dancing
3:00 - Puppet Show, Traditional Music, Brass Band Concert
3:30 - Hutchinson Family Singers, Lumberjack Show, Corn Husking Show
4:00 - Phrenology Show, Juggling Performance, Contra Dancing
Saturday, Oct. 10, 1 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 10, 1:30 p.m. - 1866 rules games
Sunday Oct. 11, 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. - 1887 Playoffs
Monday Oct. 12, 1:30 p.m. - 1866 Championship
Saturday, Oct. 17, 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. - 1887 Playoffs
Sunday, Oct. 18, 1:30 p.m. - 1887 Championship
Exciting Lumberjack Show
Old Time Baseball Games
Hutchinson Family Singers
Folk music performers
19th century dance - Join In!
Grand Exhibition Hall, Livestock Barns
Paumonok Driving Club (Horse and cart or wagons)
Cross Cut Sawing
Ploughing with real team of horses
Play in the straw fort
Pony, Elephant and Horse Drawn Wagon Rides
Pumpkin and Apple Yard