It’s not often that I’m really surprised when visiting a festival or event, but I have to admit that our visit to the Norwood Fall Fair really caught me off guard! With the Village of Norwood being as small as it is, I expected the Norwood Fall Fair to be a fun but small rural fair. Much to my surprise this was not the case! The fairgrounds in Norwood are large, immaculately clean with new, well equipped buildings. The number of people in attendance was overwhelming. I guess I shouldn’t have been too surprised, as I had visited their website a few days before. Their website is one of the best fair websites that I have seen. It was attractive, simple yet very informative!
“Welcome to the Norwood Fall Fair!”
After we had parked our car, I heard music, the Norwood Fall Fair’s parade had started. We found a place to watch it.
“Marching to the music.”
The Norwood Fair parade was great, in addition to marching bands to had floats, horses, cars and more!
“Kids loved the parade!”
The first competition we came to, as we entered the fairgrounds was the equestrian event. Rider circled the arena hoping to be their best, and impress the judges!
“Straight in the saddle”
After watching the equestrian competition, we visited the Exhibition Building. here we explored all the wonder produce displays. The effort of the competitors was amazing!
“Everyone was a winner.”
I love to see how kids particiapte in fair activities! It reaffirms my belief that fairs are are the heart of Canadian and Ontario communities.
One of the “loudest” buildings at the Fair is the “Chicken Coop“! It is always fun to be greet with such enthusiasm!
The Cattle Shows always draw large participates and crowds. I love watching 4-H kids show their skills as they parade animals several time their size! I’m not sure that I would have that much courage!
“The line-up ~ standing tall”
There is always lots to see and do at Ontario fairs, and the Norwood Fall Fair is no exception!
The Norwood Fall Fair’s Western Horse Show is very exciting, especially the Barrel Races. How do they stay on their horses?
“Racing by the barrel”
Another great Fair event is the heavy horse draw. Norwood’s competition is impressive!
“Beautiful heavy horses and wagon.”
The Norwood Fall Fair’s stage features great performances throughout the days of the Fair.
Midways form an important part of most fairs. They provide fun and excitement for fair visitors, especially for the kids. I love walking through the midway, watching and listening!
“Walking through the Midway”
The clean well maintained buildings and grounds, the well organized events that seemed to be perfectly timed, and the obvious participation of many people, all summed up the essence of the Fair!! The Norwood Fall Fair, to me embodies my vision of all what a fall fair should and can be!
“Crowds enjoying the Norwood Fall Fair”
More About the Norwood Fall Fair…
by Kevin Stuart (Festival Nomad Correspondent)
Thanksgiving weekend originated with the agricultural industry as farmers gave thanks for the crops they harvested that year. As a result, the fall fairs held that weekend are among the most spectacular anywhere. One such event is the Norwood Fall Fair which has been around for more than 140 years. The town is located along Highway 7 about 25 minutes east of Peterborough and is situated among some of the most colourful scenery that time of the year has to offer.
The event runs for four days over the long weekend and each day features different things to see and do. Saturday featured a parade with participants from the area and beyond decked out in their seasonal best. We met up with Norwood Fall Fair Second Vice President Jeff Dornan who was at one of the new events for 2011, helicopter rides. For the many who lined up it was a chance to gain a panoramic view of the fall colours over the surrounding area.
Nearby at the Asphodel-Norwood Community Centre was the Kidz Koral with many crafts and activities for children to enjoy, including driving a model tractor. A highlight had to be Papa’s Kidz Trains, a very animated miniature village and train set. Papa himself was quite animated and provided many laughs for the kids and photo ops for the parents.
Of course, animals abounded and we saw some of the best livestock on display in the barns and during the demonstrations. There was the Norwood Fall Fair Holstein and Jersey show, the heavy horse draw and a show from the Ontario Hunter Retrievers whose dogs really went through their paces.
There was also the perennially popular EIEIO petting barn plus the horse, goat and poultry displays. I must say some of the winners in the poultry division were among the most colourful I’ve seen anywhere.
Great Fall Day
Speaking of colours, although it was fall, one would never know it as the day was unseasonably warm with temperatures well into 25C territory and gorgeous sun. With such favourable conditions it’s no wonder so many turned out and it certainly helped make the outdoor events successful. The cattle and horse events as well as the tractor pull drew enthusiastic spectators in great numbers.
Under the Roof…
We did stroll around the many Norwood Fall Fair indoor displays as well including something you don’t always see at such an event – rock collections. It displayed some of the types of minerals that can be found in central Ontario. Of course pumpkins abounded and we have photos of some of the big ribbon winners including one weighing in at more than 1100 pounds! Some people even used them in a more creative sense as evidenced by the gourdly bride and groom.
Let the Music Begin…
For us and many others, a performance highlight on the Monday was Emily Flack and the Great Canadian Music Party inside the Brethren Coliseum. Emily is a member of the well-known Leahy Family and several from that clan were on hand to provide some energetic performances. Included in the show were renditions of traditional favourites along with fiddling and clogging displays. The family is large and obviously talent runs through all the generations. In fact, it was referred to not as a show but as a party. Other performers at the Norwood Fall Fair included Jake Charron, Marie-Jeanne, Brousseau, Tom Fitzgerald making it a very worthwhile stop.
As I mentioned earlier the weather was perfect for the many outdoor activities as well which consisted of arts and crafts plus other vendors. Of course the carnival atmosphere was alive and well with the various midway rides and games.
If great fall fairs are among your favourite places, make a point to see the Norwood Fall Fair, either as a first-timer or as a regular visitor.