The Bergton Fair
Tuesday, August 9 through Saturday, August 13 marks the 71st annual Bergton Fair! Mark your calendars now, so you won’t miss “The Biggest Little Fair Anywhere!” The Bergton Fair is an event that everyone should experience at least once in their lifetime. And if you go once, guaranteed you will be coming back for more.
If you’ve never been to the fair before you can expect a lot of that rural Bergton charm that everyone loves. You will see smiles and laughing. You will bump into old friends and meet new ones. You will see fancy exhibits, live entertainment, amusing games, fun rides, and of course, the finest fair food in the Shenandoah Valley.
Admission to the fair is a very family-friendly $2. It’s the best deal you will find anywhere. (Just for reference, King’s Dominion tickets start at $50, Busch Gardens is $70, and an annual pass to Disney World is $1,299! And Disney World doesn’t even have the Lutheran Church’s cooked white beans.) The fair is only $2 because the nice people of Bergton want everyone to be able to have a good time. If you can’t afford $2, then ask your neighbor. If you haven’t asked too many times before, they will probably come up with it. And we promise you will have a good time.
As always, there is a variety of entertainment this year. Josh Oldaker (Country Gospel) is on Tuesday, Standing Room Only (Rock) is on Wednesday, the Beauty Pageant is always on Thursday, Glen Shelton with guest Lisa Meadows (Country) is on Friday, and Mountain Dew TikTok sensation Spencer Hatcher (Bluegrass) is on Saturday. Spencer has maybe a billion people watching him all over the world on the computer, and he is going to be live at the Bergton Fair! He is probably the most famous person to ever perform at the fair. When I was a kid there was a guy who jumped his motorcycle over a car like Evel Knievel down at the fairgrounds. He was pretty famous, but I’m sure Spencer is way, way, way more famous. So come out on Saturday to drink Mountain Dew and see Spencer. No Bergton Fair on Sunday. If you’re still in town on Sunday, there are plenty of churches in Bergton that would welcome your visit.
The Bergton Fair has the best blue-ribbon winning vegetables, crafts and arts in the area. If you’re from Bergton or the nearby communities of Criders, Fulks Run or Mathias, you are invited to enter. The departments include farm crops, horticulture, canning, sportsman trophy, baked goods, fancywork and clothing, junior homemaking, arts and crafts and flowers. Maybe you have the tallest corn in the county or the best-tasting rhubarb pie. Bring that big sunflower or beets from your grandma’s special vegetable canning recipe. And good luck because a blue ribbon gives you bragging rights for at least a year.
One of the first memories I have of the fair is learning that entering exhibits could be a profitable business. Mom and dad showed me and my brother Keith that we could take our garden potatoes and beans and nice alfalfa hay along with some crafts that we made in Bible school and enter them as fair exhibits. We were amazed when we saw later that we won a few blue, red, and white ribbons. And not only that, but we got money with those ribbons! I took my couple of dollars and converted it all to nickels to pitch at my favorite game. I won a small orange bowl which mom kept in her cabinet for two weeks. Keith opened an account and invested his blue-ribbon winnings at F&M Bank in Timberville. About 25 years later he founded a real estate company. In a way, we were both winners. But in a more accurate way, Keith was the winner.
There is always great food at the Bergton Fair and this year is no exception. Tasty food makes every evening just a little bit better, and we have foods for everyone! The complete list includes fried pork tenderloin sandwiches, polish sausages, chicken tenders, french fries, cheeseburgers, pickle chips, hot dogs with chili and cheese, nachos with chili and cheese, pulled pork, cheese and pepperoni pizza, Turner Ham sandwiches, cheesecake, the famous deep-fried chicken, funnel cakes, elephant ears, fried country ham sandwiches, chili cheese fries, steak sandwiches, white beans, cornbread, BBQ (hamburger), pies, cakes, ice cream, and drinks! For a real Bergton Fair challenge, try it all! Do not eat before you come to the fair or you will be unnecessarily depriving yourself of one of life’s greatest pleasures.
The fair has rides that go fast and rides that go slow. There are rides that spin and rides that shake. There are rides that go up and down and rides that go back and forth. There are rides for children and rides for adults. All your favorite carnival rides from the Ferris Wheel to the Scrambler to the Merry-Go-Round! The prices are affordable, and you will like them. My personal advice is not to go on fast, spinning rides immediately after stuffing yourself. But you go ahead and do as you please.
Pets / Service Dogs
Service dogs are the only animals allowed at the Bergton Fair. A service dog is “a dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with a disability.” So sorry, please leave your pets at home, but do pick up a treat for them as you are leaving the fair. Our short-haired hound of doubtful pedigree sure likes treats…
Questions / More Information
So, if you’re interested in having a fun evening, come on down to the fair. And if you have questions or would like more information, please visit the Bergton Fair Facebook page or website at BergtonFair.com.