Ohio State Fair

A photo of the Portage County Randolph Fair.
ANDREW MEYER / WKSU

As coronavirus cases rise again in Ohio, with 1,104 new cases reported July 27, counties across the state are faced with difficult decisions regarding their county fairs. 

 

On May 21, the Ohio State Fair was canceled due to concerns about public safety and the financial feasibility of hosting an event so large while maintaining social distancing protocols. The fair was originally scheduled for July 29 to Aug. 9. Last year, fair attendance was 934,925, with people visiting from all 50 states during its 12-day run.

 

County fairs around Northeast Ohio are debating whether to ban sale or display of the Confederate flag. The grass-roots movement comes after state legislators killed a proposal that would have banned the flag across all fairs last month.

Portage County is the latest to face calls to remove the Confederate flag from its county fair. A petition from Portage County Young Democrats urges the fair board to take the “necessary steps” of banning the sale and display of the flag at the Portage County Randolph Fair.

Summertime is prime time for amusement parks, zoos and other venues. But the months of shutdown and the limits on operations – plus safety concerns from consumers – are all having a big impact on communities that rely on tourism dollars.

For the first time since World War II, the Ohio State Fair won’t go on as scheduled. The fair was set to start on July 29.

Ohio State Fair Canceled For 2020 Due To Coronavirus

May 21, 2020

This summer's Ohio State Fair is the latest event to be scuttled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

People watching DeWine sign bill.
DAN KONIK / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Gov. Mike DeWine has signed into law a bill that strengthens rules for amusement rides in Ohio. 

The new law is named after 18-year old Tyler Jarrell, who was killed in a ride malfunction at the Ohio State Fair in 2018. Seven other people were hurt. Ohio Department of Agriculture Director Dorothy Pelanda says the new law codifies a more extensive inspection process.

Akron Skyline
City of Akron

Here are your morning headlines for Friday July 26:

photo of Gov. DeWine
DAN KONIK

It’s opening day at the Ohio State Fair. Hundreds of thousands of people are expected make their way to Columbus to enjoy the food, rides, games, and animals. Gov. Mike DeWine saw this as a great way to show off what the state has to offer.

Backed by the All-Ohio State Fair Choir and Band, DeWine officially opened the 166th Ohio State Fair.

The ribbon-cutting ceremony was followed by the traditional tour of the fair, DeWine’s first as governor.

photo of aerial photo of Northern Ohio farmland
OHIO PUBLIC RADIO

Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, June 4:

photo of Lordstown GM assembly line
YOUR VOICE OHIO

Here are your morning headlines for Monday, March 18: 

Ohio State Fair
WIKIPEDIA

Here are your morning headlines for Monday, September 17: 

  • Ohio State Fair contract with operator of fatal ride;
  • Akron borrows more money for sewer project;
  • Boyfriend charged after remains of missing woman Akron found;
  • Ohio Supreme Court to decide conviction for couple who failed to receive medical care for daughter;
  • Construction project begins on State Route 8;

Ohio State Fair ends contract with operator of fatal ride

photo of Ohio State Fair
KAREN KASLER / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Here are your morning headlines for Monday, September 10:

  • Second victim dies following 2017  Ohio State Fair ride accident;
  • Chippewa Lake under algae bloom advisory;
  • Heavy rainfall causes closures, cancellations;
  • Officials continue to investigate Cincinnati shooter's motive;
  • State medical marijuana program officially misses Sept. 8 deadline;
  • Ohio Statehouse to hold annual ghostly celebration;

Second victim dies following 2017  Ohio State Fair ride accident

Attendance at the Ohio State Fair has been up compared to last year, when fair officials were dealing with the fallout from a deadly ride accident.

photo of Gov. John Kasich
ANDY CHOW / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Gov. John Kasich went on his final tour of the Ohio State Fair as governor. His visit comes as Ohio farmers are caught in the middle of an international trade war.

The state's No. 1 industry, agriculture, is on full display at the fair. That’s why Kasich is so concerned with the latest decisions coming out of Washington, D.C.

Facebook.com / Facebook

A year ago this week, an 18-year-old Columbus man was killed on a thrill ride on the first day of the Ohio State Fair. Legislation has been proposed to strengthen ride safety, but the law named for Tyler Jarrell hasn’t passed yet.

Tyler’s Law was introduced in May, nine months after Jarrell was thrown from the Fireball thrill ride, which broke apart because of extensive corrosion. 

photo of Ohio State Fair
KAREN KASLER / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, July 24:

Ohio State Fair
WIKIPEDIA

The Ohio State Fair starts Wednesday and state officials say they are implementing additional testing to prevent ride malfunctions this year.

The vendor that supplied the Fire Ball is back again: Amusements of America is in its last year of a multi-year contract to supply state fair rides.

Here are your morning headlines for Friday, May 4:

DAN KONIK

Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, April 18:

Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, March 27:

photo of Ohio Statehouse cupola
STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, March 20:

Ohio Statehouse
State of Ohio

Here are your morning headlines for Monday, December 4th:

photo of Ohio State Fair
KAREN KASLER / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

Here are your morning headlines for Monday, September 18th:

Former Akron Police Chief James Nice
M.L. SCHULTZE / WKSU public radio

Here are your headlines for Friday, September 1:

photo of Ohio State Fair
KAREN KASLER / STATEHOUSE NEWS BUREAU

After years of big numbers, attendance at this year’s Ohio State Fair plummeted to its lowest number in 13 years.

In its 12-day run the fair brought in just over 801,000 – the lowest number since 2004 and a 13 percent drop from last year. 

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