It's 100 Years for the Delaware State Fair - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

It's 100 Years for the Delaware State Fair

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HARRINGTON, Del - Wednesday was the 100th opening day of the Delaware State Fair at its current site in Harrington. The first event did not incorporate the entire state.  In July 1920, what took place was called the Kent and Sussex County Fair. It was not until 1962 it became representative of all of Delaware when it evolved into the Delaware State Fair.  
 
Former state Rep. Harvey Kenton remembers coming to the fair as a child from his home in Milford.
 
"We would start two months in advance and save our money," Kenton, who has been on the fair's board since 1986, said. "We would enter vegetables out of our garden and we brought animals over (to the fair). We put those in for judging and it was just a thrill. It just part of life around here."
 
The original intent was to promote agriculture in the region. It still plays a big role in the fair. Kenton expects nearly 4,000 animals to participate in events. In addition, the 4H and Future Future Farmers of America have exhibits where the ice rink is located on the fairgrounds.
 
When Kenton joined the board, those grounds consisted of mostly dirt roads and wooden buildings. That has changed to pavement and modern structures. 
 
Country music has also long been a draw. The 1990 fair boasted a lineup that included Barbara Mandrell and Randy Travis. This year Sugarland and Reba McEntire will take the stage in Harrington.
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