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Harmony Free Fair back for 73rd year

As an agricultural fair, there are lots of animals, and plenty of agriculturally focused demonstrations.
Published: Sep. 5, 2021 at 8:09 PM EDT
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HARMONY, Maine (WABI) - It’s fair season in Maine, and thousands of people have already come through the gates of the Blue Hill and Windsor Fairs this weekend.

”The smell of French fries and cotton candy, you know that’s the fair,” said Jeff Chadbourne, President of the Harmony Patriarchs Club.

The Harmony Free Fair is in it’s 73rd year, organized by the Harmony Patriarchs Club- created in 1947 as a community betterment program.

And there may be nothing better for a community than a fair that’s absolutely free.

“We’re the only fair in the state of Maine that doesn’t have a gate fee or a parking fee” said Chadbourne. “You just walk around the fairgrounds and you can do what you want.”

As an agricultural fair, there are lots of animals, and plenty of agriculturally focused demonstrations.

But more than that, this year’s fair is a chance to revisit what makes the Harmony Free Fair such an important event for this area of Maine, after COVID shut down the fair last year.

“People are just dying to get outside and do something. And this is exactly the venue you want,” said Chadbourne. “You’re outside, the buildings are open. A lot of people use this as a family reunion-type thing, you know, to sit and talk to people they haven’t seen in a year. Well now it’s been two years. So they like getting back together.”

The Harmony Free Fair still faces some pandemic related effects, including not having a midway this year.

It also falls during the same weekend as larger fairs as the Blue Hill and the Windsor fairs, which may have more name recognition outside of the towns they happen to be in.

But in many ways, that means the Harmony Free Fair has something those other fairs don’t.

“You know all the fairs are good, but you don’t have to be a big fair to be a good fair,” said Chadbourne. “I’ve heard that comment a couple times. Someone said yesterday that this fair is real. It feels real when you walk into the fairgrounds. That’s what it’s supposed to be.”

The Harmony Free Fair held a fireworks display Sunday night, and a Labor Day Parade Monday morning at 9:30.

For a full schedule of events for Monday’s last day of the fair, go to the Harmony Free Fair Facebook page.

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