One of the state’s largest agricultural fairs has been canceled for another year due to the coronavirus.
Organizers cited the ongoing pandemic, rising cases in Maine and community feedback as reasons to cancel the Common Ground Country Fair — set to be held Sept. 24-26 in Unity.
Waldo County — where the fair is held — is considered a hotspot for coronavirus transmission, showing some of the highest rates of new coronavirus cases in recent weeks as the highly contagious delta variant has taken hold. As of Wednesday, the county had 279.49 cases per 100,000 people and 143 active cases. The county reported 11 new cases and has a new case rate of 3.
Officials for Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association, the organizer of the fair, hope to continue with the spirit of the fair by releasing educational videos during the weekend of the fair, continuing its online store and hosting smaller events throughout the fall.
Officials will also reach out to ticket holders for refunds or transitioning them into donations for the association.
“When we made the decision to move forward in May we hoped that we’d be in a different place with the pandemic based on the information that was available at the time. By working together, we hope that we will all get through this difficult situation,” Sarah Alexander, executive director for the fair contingency team, said.
The Common Ground Country Fair started in 1977. The fair offers educational talks, vendors and an organic farmers market.