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Government & Politics

New Health Department Director Issues Order to Reopen County Fairs

A photo of Randolph Fair.
County fairs in Ohio will be allowed to reopen so long as they follow safety guidelines.

Interim Director of the Ohio Department of Health Lance Himes has issued a new order allowing for the reopening of county fairs, with exceptions to protect the health of participants. The order is effective immediately and will remain in place until 11:59 on October 21, 2020. 

County fairs, including animal exhibitions, are allowed to reopen if they meet all the safety guidelines. These guidelines include complying with social distancing requirements, which consist of staying six feet away from other individuals, frequent hand washing or availability of hand sanitizer, covering coughs and sneezes, regularly cleaning surfaces and not shaking hands. Businesses must allow customers to wear facial coverings, but they are not required. All employees must be wearing a facial covering unless there is a justifiable reason not to. 

County fairs must be conducted in a way that discourages large gatherings. This includes six feet markers and one way traffic patterns. Capacity in grandstands must be cut in half. There will also be extra sanitation stations. 

Currently, Junior Fair competitions and exhibits and open class events and competitions are set to reopen. However, more events may reopen if the pandemic recedes in Ohio. If there is a second spike, these events may be canceled once again. 

Elderly people and those who are immunocompromised are still encouraged to stay at home unless seeking medical attention. 

See the full order below.