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A venerable tradition

by Patrick Raftis

Mapleton residents are getting set to celebrate an institution older than the nation.

Having recently put on a major bash for Canada’s 150th birthday, local residents are set to enjoy the 161st edition of the Drayton Fair from Aug. 11 to 13. In fact, Canada Growing Forward: 150 Years is the theme of this year’s event.

“Every year we strive to offer the events you have come to expect and at the same time offer some new and unique features, and especially this year, as we celebrate our great country’s past and exciting future,” states Drayton/Mapleton Agricultural Society president Jim Zantinge in a message to fair-goers.

The venerable agricultural fair remains true to its original purpose of sharing and celebrating the local harvest, with farm-focused displays and competitions filling large portions of the schedule. That includes the popular tractor pulls that draw huge crowds on Friday and Saturday night.

Other events, such as the demolition derby set for Aug. 13 at 2pm, and a euchre tournament on Aug. 11 from 7 to 9pm, while not specifically farm-inspired, definitely showcase the flavour of a life in a rural community.

The Drayton Fair’s ongoing success can be attributed to the hard work and foresight of a dedicated group of volunteers and the appreciation of a receptive community. In this part of the world, a strong agricultural fair is indicative of a strong community. One only needs to check out the impressive event schedule at to know this community has those key elements in place.

Gates and exhibits open on Friday night, Aug. 11, at 5pm and the fun is non-stop all weekend as the local fairgrounds become the place to be in Mapleton.

August 4, 2017


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