KERSEY — The Elk County Fair offered any homegrown or handmade thing people could think of last week, showcasing agriculture, music, rides and a good time in Kersey.

Children were seen with sticky cotton-candy hands, visiting with goats at the petting zoo or jumping in the bouncy house throughout the fair grounds.

The fair opened Tuesday with Senior Citizen Day, a new addition to the fair, and a fireworks display, with entertainment by Jacob and Annalese. The traditional fair queen was crowned, and there also was a new king award this year.

The fair welcomed a few new assets, the most exciting of which were the swirling and twirling mechanical rides provided by American Amusement Rentals — a family-owned and operated business based in Franklinville, New York.

In previous years, the fair has had inflatable rides like the slide or bouncy house, so the company’s presence was big news.

The announcement in early July received a huge social media response, with a lot of excitement and most likely higher attendance numbers at the fair. Some responses to the announcement included “That is great news!” and “That is good for the kids.”

Musical entertainment was also presented by the Guitar Club — a classic rock cover band from Ridgway, and the Oil City-based band Thorn Haven.

The Elk County Farm Bureau, which has had its sweets booth set up at the fair since 1980, whipped up funnel cakes and milkshakes to raise funds for agriculture education.

Ernie Mattiuz of Earlyville Farm and Diane Gillen of Double D Farm in Kersey said they enjoy making dairy-based products and bringing awareness to local farmers.

The first Elk County Fair was held before World War II on Diesel Street in St. Marys, said fair board Chairman Warren Stewart. It became a nonprofit organization in 1973 and was reorganized in 1974, when it was held behind the Kersey Community Building.

Much more than just a family-friendly environment, the Elk County Fair has become a tradition, as well as a way to promote businesses and organizations, agriculture and industry.

The fair now encompasses three stages and two exhibit halls across its 33 acres. Building 1, where most of the displays are held during the fair, received a new concrete floor last year.

Many people enter their foods or bake their cakes to be judged or presented on display.

The fair welcomed some new events and competitions, including a “pallet upcycling competition” and cute pet contest.

“The fair promotes business methods and brings together rural and urban people, and encourages exhibitors and vendors,” Stewart said in a previous Courier Express article. “We have a lot of farmers that help us and participate with us. We have any homegrown thing you can think of.”

The traditional Mud Bog competition was held Friday evening, where racers got a little dirty entertaining the crowd.

Saturday, the fair’s most active day, presented an open horse show, talent show, ice cream contest, baby parade and more. The Demolition Derby was held last night, the final night of the fair.

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