Preparations for 150th anniversary of fair and country
Nation Valley News
FINCH — Like Canada itself, the Stormont County Fair celebrates its 150th anniversary this summer.
Preparations for the upcoming milestone were among the discussed highlights at the Stormont County Agricultural Society’s annual general meeting, Jan. 21. For example, look for potential new historical recipe classes in the homecraft competitions at the Labour Day weekend fair.
Society members, who filled the boardroom at the South Nation Conservation building, also honoured Jack and Joyce Helmer with the annually conferred Ontario Association of Agricultural Societies (OAAS) Agricultural Service Diploma.
The couple have volunteered with the Newington-based Stormont County Fair for many years — with Jack involved with horse-related attractions for over half a century. Initially part of the light-horse racehorse committee, he moved on to the heavy horse committee when racing was discontinued. He also served as president in 1976 and past president from 1977 through 1982.
Joyce has been a fixture overseeing the flower competitions and helping out in the exhibit hall.
Now living in Avonmore, the Helmers resided in Newington through much of their service, which they are winding down this year.
“We were married in 1960 and we started then with helping at the fair,” Joyce recalled.
“They’ve been with us through thick and thin,” said longtime fair board member Elmer Stewart, who happily added that members of the Simmons family have stepped up to assist on the heavy horse committee following Jack’s retirement.