Now Is Your Time to Shine at the Clarke County Fair

A variety of vegetables - photo Teresa Gordon

Do you have a yummy cookie recipe that you’d like to share? Or fantastic vegetables to boast about? Or have your children made some darling crafts throughout the year that you’re proud of?

Then enter them into the Fair! If you’ve done it before, then you know the drill. But if you’re new to the county or have ever walked through the Homemaking building and thought “how do I enter my fabulous collection of rocks?”,here’s all the information you need.

It’s simple. Just bring your exhibits to the Clarke County Ruritan Fairgrounds during the specified time, wait in line to get your exhibitor #, then proceed to the appropriate department to submit your exhibit.

no images were found

The Homemaking department includes Arts & Crafts, Baked Goods, Food Preservation, Clothing, Needle Art, Arts & Craft Paintings, Hobbies & Collections, Educational Exhibits. The other departments are Fine Arts, Photography, Agriculture/Horticulture (fruits, garden vegetables & field crops) and Floral. Each department will accept entries from children and adults. And please note that entries in the Fine Arts, Photography and Arts & Crafts Pictures must be framed, mounted with a wire or screw eye for hanging.

New this year in the Homemaking-Food Preservation department is a Wine Category.

And a special “Everybody Loves Chocolate Recipe Contest” is being sponsored by the Virginia Egg Council.

Here are the times to submit your exhibits:

  • Sunday, August 14       3 p.m. – 7 p.m. – Homemaking, Fine Arts & Photography exhibits accepted
  • Monday, August 15       11 a.m.- 7 p.m. – Homemaking, Fine Arts & Photography exhibits accepted
  • Monday, August 15         1 p.m.- 8 p.m.       – Agriculture and Horticulture exhibits accepted
  • Tuesday, August 16       9 a.m.- Noon-       Agriculture ,Horticulture and Floral exhibits accepted
  • Tuesday, August 16     5 p.m.- 9 p.m.- Floral exhibits accepted

The Clarke County Fair accepts exhibits from Clarke County as well as the adjoining counties: Loudoun, Fauquier, Warren, Frederick and Jefferson County, WV.

For complete rules & details, visit and click on “Departments”. The complete rules and categories can also be found in the 57th Annual Clarke County Fair catalog which is available. Free-of-charge, at area businesses such as the Bank of Clarke County, BBT, Berryville Newstand, Library, County Offices, etc.


  1. I wanna judge the wine! Where do I volunteer?

  2. Tammy Lanham says:

    Thanks CDN for another timely article!
    This is the perfect time for bored kids to gather up their prized possesions around the house- just pick up a Fair book and check out the categories…… The last couple of years my kids have entered lego models, school projects and artwork, keychain collections, models, pez dispenser collections, and photography. They’ve snipped single stem flowers and herbs from the back yard to enter in the youth floral category and this year we’ll add pickles we recently canned. Last year the items received many ribbons, which really added up when we went to collect the money prizes (my son earned over $20.00 for his hard work!) This year we’ll be mostly helping out with the scouts serving concessions, but wanted to let families know what a great opportunity this is for the kids to get involved!
    See you at the fair!

  3. asleep at the keyboard says:

    Clarke County Fair!!!! ZZZZZZZs. Boring. Not enough seating room for major, pig and calf scrambles,demo-derbys rodeo. The bleachers are dangerous. Have seen folks feet slip while stepping on the narrow boards and have fallen through the openings, In my opinion the best event was lost some years ago, The horse pull. Same tired ole ride company been there before my teen years. DO something different. I guess it’s just like the rest of the county, run by the good-ol boys scared of change. oh.. well I will go get some cheese to go with my whine.

    • Whine indeed.

      The CC Fair is the best county fair in the area.

      Perhaps asleep wants to go back to the good ol’ days when they would book wrestling gorillas or boxing kangaroos.

    • haha, Love it, Asleep at the keyboard. ZZZZZZZZZZZ’s, maybe if the good-ol boys adapted to change or even for that matter drive over the mountain and go visit let’s say the Prince William County Fair they may have a eye opener of how a Fair is suppose to run. Oh wait I must be dreamin back to the reality world.

  4. asleep in Clarke says:

    I agree with “asleep” BORING! I never even heard of Jaime Johnson the headliner for this years concert.

    A little bit of change just might make the fair some money!

  5. Ummm, Jamey Johnson has been around for quite a while.

  6. Bville-Bud says:

    The fair has always been my favorite week of the year; great food, family, friends and fun! Even while in the military took leave that week every year since I knew I could find everyone I cared about under those old oak trees. Where else are you going to get all of that for $5.00? Sounds like a great recession getaway to me.

  7. Bville-Bud says:

    Oops, $7 this year instead of $5, that is the first increase in WAY over a decade, and still a smoking deal, especially when compared to other fairs that make you pay an entry, and again for many events (demo derby, rodeo, etc.).

    Just a few thoughts for asleep; I volunteer at least 72 hours during fair week to make the event happen along with probably a hundred other Clarke friends and citizens; that doesn’t include a year’s worth of preparation; instead of sleeping behind that keyboard, why don’t you join us? We’d love your help and suggestions (no joke or sarcasm); contact someone in the Ruritan and we can sign you up for whatever committee you would prefer. Better yet, join up and share in the fun and planning all year long, we would love to have you.

    BTW it is not the same ride company; we changed it in the last five. I love the horse pulls also, but horse pullers are hard to come by these days, and we do something different EVERY year, come and check it out!

    • It was my understanding that the horse pulls were not attracting many pullers because there were bigger pulls taking place at the same time up in PA. I can’t say I blame them, but they sure were a neat event to watch, I miss them!

    • Stonebroke says:

      I love the CC Fair, but they do have the same carnival since I’ve been attending the fair. Over 30 years.

      (Carnival Rides provided by Cole Shows Amusement Company, Inc)

      • Cole Amusement and Henry T. Cole Shows are two different companies, and both do business in Virginia. Besides, what’s the difference between ferris wheels, swings, tilt-a-whirls, etc. anyway?

        So who remembers when the Scrambler went berserk for over thirty minutes and the fire company had to drown out the engine so that the vendor could get it stopped? Boy, those were the days when stuff was REALLY fun!


    • But…you DO still have to pay for the food, and the rides, and the games, and the Jamey Johnson concert, and the…

      So…it adds to a bit more than just the $7 per person you tout.

  8. There are a number of annual events in Clarke County that help to define us which I anticipate eagerly. Among these are the Christmas parade, the Memorial Day Service, the Fireman’s Yard Party, St. Mary’s Strawberry Festival, the Mother’s Day Arboretum Sale, the CCHS citrus and horticulture sales, and, yes, the Clarke County Fair. There are others, I’m sure, that others enjoy equally. There is comfort in tradition.

  9. been here a long time says:

    When people complain about the fair, I wonder exactly what they think they should get for their $7.00. Come on , when some people pay $3.00 or more for coffee, then don’t b–th about the gate price at the fair. It is great fun if you want it to be, if it doesn’t appeal to you. Stay home and the rest of us will be there in the dust and having a great time.

  10. asleep at the keyboard says:

    Pull up Warren county fair schedule. Foghat, Neal McCoy, comedy on stage and Monster trucks, atv drag races, lawnmower pull and many other events that more than likely appeal to all ages. I seem to have woke up most of Clarke County with my first post. Now stay awake and ask for change. No Bob I don’t want to see Monkey wrestling or Kangaroo boxing. But, I would like to see something more that just folks I have not seen since last fair. I did not mean to give an impression that I don’t like the fair. Just add new and exciting events. Folks would pay for the entertainment if it’s good.

    • Naked Truth says:

      At least bring in someone better for the “Grandstand”. I’d rather see washed-up hair bands from the 80s. Anybody is better than Bucky and Bo. There is nothing at the fair to make me want to come there more than one time.

    • Roscoe Evans says:

      Warren County has two and one half times the population of Clarke.

      Market size matters, for the fair just like for strip malls, Walmarts, and Handy Marts.

      That said, Foghat is old hat, Neal McCoy isn’t any great shakes for me. Monster trucks lost their appeal when I turned 16. I like the fair for the pigs and chickens, cattle and kids, and frankly, everything that is old fashioned about it. I dislike the dust, but recognize that’s part of it all. Nothing needs to change: it’s good as it is. You want new and exciting? Fine, but that’s not a fair.

      If you’re intent on change, though, do it yourself. Until there is a market for it, nobody you ask will give it to you.

      • One thing needs to change, Roscoe …

        They need to stop running out of chicken bbq before I get there!

        Either that or I gotta start eating earlier. 🙂 I mean really, who eats supper at 5 o’clock?

  11. left the ville behind says:

    Do they still have the purple holstein @ the dairy barns? Loved the homemade ice cream from there…

  12. Stonebroke says:

    They could bring back Phil Dirt and the Dozers! I remember when they had this band years ago!

  13. sargewillis says:

    Well “Hmm”, your right, there is a cost for some of the stuff at the fair,, but come on, the food prices at the Ruritan food stand are the lowest of anywhere around, everyone that works in the stand is doing it as a volunteer so we are able to keep the prices low.

    • Sarge, my apologies. I meant no disrespect. I was responding to Bville-Bud’s line about the “great food, and fun, and rides” that he said were to be had “all for $7.” Me and my family go every year and enjoy it immensely, and I appreciate all the effort you and everyone puts in.

  14. asleep at the keyboard says:

    Rosco, do you really think only Clarke citizens are the only folks to attend our fair? Fairs draw folks from most all adjoining counties and states and then some. Offer different events and you will draw more folks from those counties and states. Just maybe they will visit our for fair several times. Instead of just once to see the livestock and the kids. I happen to still like older music, exciting action events. Tradition is good but younger folks may get bored with tradition. You can keep tradition and still have other events to attract a full spectrum of fair visitors. The adjoining county fairs have the traditional fair garb and the other events also. So why can’t Clarke do the same?

  15. sargewillis says:

    Hey “Hmmm” none taken, we have so many good folks that work very hard for free I try to let them know how much we appreciate it whenever I can.

  16. My children participated in the fair for years. Through the 4-H Club. They loved every minute. It made them feel like they were a strong part of the community and worked hard all year to be able to be eligible to enter their animals for show. They lived at that fair day in and day out. Cleaned and mucked out stalls. Let little children pet their animals. If they won a ribbon at a show it was the bonus for all their hard work. Not only animals did they show,they baked,the grew flowers and volunteered time at the Ruitan Food Booth. They made great new friends and were proud of their accomplishments. They looked forward to the moment when they were free to partake in the rides and games,they had to take turns so others could stay at the barns and care for the animals, They paid the same price as everyone else. By the end of a hot August week they were exhausted and then the cleaning began. The show barns and all other places had to be spotless before they could leave. After that prepare for the upcoming school year. Some may find the fair boring and the music dull or the rides to expensive,parking a pain but if you do decide to take some time out and go visit the animal area. Looking and talking to these kids is free and who knows maybe your child will decide that perhaps a week at the fair is not so boring after all. My children are grown now but somehow they try to return to Clarke County during fair week and breathe in their memories. Oh,and please do not forget that the Ruitans use part of the money made for scholarships to college bound Clarke County Seniors. I really so not think there is a fair quite like the one in this beautiful county of Clarke VA.