LITTLE VALLEY, NY (WNY News Now) – The Cattaraugus County fair in Little Valley kicked off on Sunday, with a week full of family friendly fun on tap.
“It’s a full year-long thing. Between booking the entertainment, getting everything set for the next year, maybe making some changes, getting the entries done, grounds improvements, those are ongoing. It’s a full year thing, it takes a lot of people, a lot of time to put it all together,” explains Nell Fellows, Secretary of the Cattaraugus Agricultural Society.
The fair is a staple of family-friendly entertainment, with a low admission fee of only $12 that provides access to 3 to 4 shows daily, livestock, and over one hundred vendors to visit.
“We’re a pay-one price fair, which means when you pay the one price at the gate that includes your unlimited Powers and Thomas Midway rides. The free show on Tuesday night is The Hotel California, which is an Eagles tribute band. On Sunday night we start out with a rodeo, Monday night a demolition derby. Concerts on Wednesday and Thursday. Walker Hayes on Wednesday night, Travis Tritt on Thursday,” says Fellows.
Motorsport weekend begins Friday, with a Monster Truck Rally that continues to Saturday, as well as a Big Rig Truck Pull that concludes the fair.
“We have a seal show, we have Swifty Swine racing pigs, we have exhibits galore. Animals and all the domestics, entries will be coming in pretty quick in a couple of days for set up. We have lots of things to offer, not just midway rides. People think it’s a midway ride ticket, but it’s not. It’s a fair admission, and there’s something for everyone here,” assures Fellows.
The setup of the fair is a long process, which couldn’t be done without the hardworking crew that returns each year.
“We’ve got a couple people that are here full-time, weather permitting. They’re laid off in the winter of course, but we have a twelve member director board who kinda makes the decisions,” says Fellows. “But we have probably a half dozen, maybe up to ten department heads. We’ve got our gate help which comes back year after year, and we count on them just like they count on us to be here.”
The fair returned last year following COVID shutdowns, which saw a huge jump in attendance that fair organizers are expecting to see again this year.
“Normally we run probably 75,000 people. Last year, post pandemic, the other fairs around weren’t running. We were blessed with a lot of people, we probably had 100,000 last year,” says Fellows. “We had a lot of new people. A lot of people from out of the area as well as a lot of people from the county that support us who came here and decided they liked what they saw and I think they’re coming back again.”