Since 1850, Drumbo Fair, Part of Fall, Part of History
The success and longevity of Drumbo Fair since 1850 is based on strong community involvement and a desire to promote and improve the local agricultural industry. The Blenheim Agricultural Society was formed with this goal in mind.
Starting in 1850, Drumbo Fair was held as part of a summer community gathering. But by 1854, the first Drumbo fall fair was held on the Muma farm, north of Drumbo, where a new barn was used for inside exhibits and an excellent horse show was held on the grounds. The Blenheim Agricultural Society continued yearly to hold a fall fair which was rotated around the township until 1891 when a centralized site was purchased in Drumbo to allow the use of permanent buildings. By 1905, with the exhibit hall getting old, the Agricultural Society made arrangements with the Drumbo Curling Club to use the newly constructed arena for Drumbo Fair activities and display areas.
Although the details of the Drumbo Fair have changed over time, the strong community involvement has allowed the construction of the Agricultural Hall in 1967 and the Exhibit Hall in the late 1980’s, which have continued to serve the community. A major renovation project at the Agricultural Hall was completed in 2006.
Drumbo Fair has a long history of involving children in its activities. Foot races, livestock shows and baking in the early years naturally gave rise to the inclusion of the Blenheim Township School Fair as part of the Drumbo Fair. In the 1940’s and 50’s, the enthusiasm of the school fair parades and the crowds of children on the grounds were a highlight. The School Fair is still one of the best parts of the Drumbo Fair with art displays from the local schools and individual competitions in over 100 classes.
What started as families gathering to compare agricultural produce in a picnic atmosphere continues today as a friendly place to meet while celebrating community activities and the agricultural spirit of the area. Individually, we may have fond memories of different aspects of Drumbo Fair — the family entertainment, displays, opening night show, Ambassador Competition, horse shows or home crafts and photography — but the key elements that have lasted since 1850 are the strong community spirit and the fact that the Drumbo Fall Fair is the best place to meet friends on a September weekend.