CUYAHOGA COUNTY, Ohio — In a press release issued on Friday, Cuyahoga County Fair President Timothy Fowler announced the board's decision to postpone the 124th Annual Cuyahoga County Fair until August 2021 amid COVID-19 concerns.
The decision to reluctantly postpone the fair came after consulting with the Cuyahoga County Board of Health, concessioners and all parties involved, as well as consideration of the State of Ohio and Governor Mike DeWine's safety recommendations.
"Our goal now, and in the future, is for the safety and welfare of the public, employees, volunteers and thousands of participants," said Fowler. "The decision has been very difficult, emotional and well thought out. The fair industry is very integrated and complex with participants assembling from throughout the country. It is a business and we must get it right. One error destroys a year of planning and preparation."
The fair is the latest to fall victim to cancelled or postponed events this summer to the global pandemic.
"The Cuyahoga County Fair Board is committed to a strong comeback in 2021 with an event that will fulfill the public's view and what they have come to expect," Fowler closed.
On Thursday, DeWine and Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton stated that they strongly recommend that for the 2020 fair season, agricultural societies limit fairs to allow only for 4-H and FFA “Junior Fair” activities.
However, if fair boards decide that they can safely host attractions, concessions, and exhibitors beyond Junior Fair activities, as long as they comply with the state's safety protocols, the events will be allowed to happen.
"Decisions about county and independent fairs should be made locally because each county and independent fair is unique and has different challenges," Gov. DeWine said during his COVID-19 briefing in Columbus.