In 1892, local farmers in the Wapping Grange assembled to create a family-centered, agriculturally based local fair. With the intention to benefit the local Wapping School District, the fair was held annually until 1934 when economic depression prevented it from opening. In 1945, the fair began again in honor of South Windsor's 100th birthday and has been running ever since.
Although it has seen several different homes, such as Hall's Grove, Wapping school and Zagorski Park, it has continued to hold a special place in the heart of locals who look forward to it every year.
Paul Petrillo, Chairman of the Wapping Fair, said last week that part of the fair's long lasting success is tied to the fact that they have tried to keep the event family friendly and keep the entrance fees low.
"Part of being family-friendly is being family-affordable," Petrillo said. "We've kept our fees very reasonable over the years. Not many places can a family of 4 with 2 young children go for only $12 and get a day full of entertainment."
They have also decided to work with their food vendors to offer coupons at their booths. On Sundays the fair is offering $1 off admission with a donation of a non-perishable food item.
Petrillo also feels that bringing in unique, even old-world, acts, draws local crowds in to the event.
"We have brought in top attractions such as Racing Pigs, Roderick Russell (sword swallower/fire eater) and Circus Stella (acrobat, trapeze, etc) that are not commonly seen at other events or fairs," he said.
The Fair will also boast activities such as:
- 7,000 square feet of adorable animals
- Local, live bands (Paul Tyler, James McPherson, Bonsai Trees and Iron-Y)
- Delicious food provided by: the South Windsor Democratic committee, Wapping Community Church, South Windsor Jaycees, Campion's and Rita's
- Traditional crafts such as candle and pottery making
- Rideas by Tufano Amusements
- The return of the Doodlebugs!
In 2007, the fair moved for hopefully the last time, to Evergreen Walk. It continues it's history of giving back to the community and has made financial gifts to several groups in town such as the South Windsor Fire Department, the boundless playground located on Nevers Road, the South Windsor Police Department and the local food and fuels banks.
Want to plan your day at the fair? Go to the Wapping Fair's website for all the information you will need to schedule a fun filled family day.