Worcester Recreation, Parks Dept. To Support County Fair

Worcester Recreation, Parks Dept. To Support County Fair
Livestock is pictured on hand at a previous year’s Worcester County Fair. Submitted Photo

SNOW HILL – The Worcester County Fair is expected to benefit from increased county support moving forward.

The Worcester County Commissioners last week agreed they wanted to see Worcester County Recreation and Parks take a larger role in the production of the county fair.

“I do feel we could grow this event provided we have the right support and partnerships in place,” said Kelly Rados, the county’s director of recreation and parks.

In an effort to sustain and grow the Worcester County Fair, Rados spoke to the commissioners last week about ways her department could get involved in the event going forward. She told the commissioners that while the fair board had already voted to schedule the next fair for July 12-15 2024, there were still opportunities for her department to be involved in the process.

Commissioner Ted Elder made a motion to have Rados’ staff get involved in fair production.

“The county fair is a bright spot in our community,” he said.

Commissioner Chip Bertino asked what kind of budgetary support the department would need. Rados said the budget for Harbor Day at the Docks was $38,500.

“It would be slightly north of that,” she said.

Commissioner Eric Fiori asked what the fair board’s date decision meant for the event.

Rados said that if the fair was held during the July dates, it would have to be held at Byrd Park as it has been in recent years.

She indicated that the county would like to see the event moved to John Walter Smith Park but that that location wasn’t available for the July dates. As far as whether her department would change the dates of the event, Rados said that was to be determined.

Commissioner Joe Mitrecic said he felt county staff needed to communicate with the fair board to determine the best course forward.

“I think it’s woefully underdone so to speak where it is now,” Mitrecic said.

Fiori said another issue that should be considered as far as location was the fact that Byrd Park was prone to flooding.

Commissioner Diana Purnell agreed a collaboration between recreation and parks and the fair board could lead to a successful event.

“We need to work together for the future,” she said.

Rados said that if the 2024 event was already in motion, her department could provide support for the event while planning for a larger role the following year.

About The Author: Charlene Sharpe

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Charlene Sharpe has been with The Dispatch since 2014. A graduate of Stephen Decatur High School and the University of Richmond, she spent seven years with the Delmarva Media Group before joining the team at The Dispatch.