Jasper County Fair

1300 Fairground Avenue
Newton, IL 62448

618-783-3901

Fair History

The Jasper County Fair has been in existence since 1870. the first years of the fair were held on a different site than the present fairgrounds. The first fair consisted of 7 race horses, 5 cattle and 6 pigs. in 1874 the fair board purchased a small piece of land that is part of the present fairgrounds. By purchasing land, they had the opportunity to expand and in 1905 were able to build a race track, grandstand, and livestock buildings. Electricity was extended to the fairgrounds in 1915. In 1941 a bandstand was built for musical entertainment. Lights were put up around the track in 1948. In the spring of 1951, the wooden grandstand burned. The board decided if they were going to hold a fair, a new grandstand must be built. Plans were drawn and the new grandstand was built of concrete and still remains on the grounds today. Horse barns were built in 1939 and 1940. The Floral Hall was built in 1965. With the assistance from the Department of Agriculture the 4-H building became a reality in 1999. Another horse barn was added in 2004 and a cattle barn in 2008. Permanent bleachers were put in the infield in 2011 and a horse arena constructed there in 2017.

There were ups and downs through the early years of the fair, but as time progressed, the fair was considered a success. It was reported in the local newspaper that there was an average of 5,000 people attending each day. In the early 1900's the different events that took place consisted of a football game, auto racing, boxing, rodeo, cow calling contest, mule races along with the harness racing, and various bands from the county provided music. In 1959 the queen pageant was started. Livestock exhibits as well as Floral Hall exhibits have been a part of the fair for most of its history.

The Jasper County Fair has encountered many ups and downs throughout its history. With the hard work and dedication provided by the past members of the fair board, a firm foundation has been set for the future generations to continue the traditions for visitors to enjoy in years to come.

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