Fair to honor founding members during event
By Rob Wheary
SUNBURY - The 2013 Northumberland County Fair will honor the memory of two of their founding members during the 14th annual event, which was started to promote the agricultural benefits of the county.
This year's program book was dedicated to the memory of Ed Mashburn and Bella Wydra, two individuals who were on the board when the event, then called the Northumberland County Expo, started in 2000 at Elysburg's All Home Days grounds.
Mashburn, formerly of Northumberland, passed away in April. Wydra, of Elysburg, was 89 when she passed away in June.
"Keeping this fair growing and going strong is a great way to honor their memories and give back to the community. They are both very much missed," said Kim Clemens, fair president.
This year's fair will be held at the former Sunbury Armory, Mile Hill Road, from 3 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 22 and Friday, Aug. 23, and from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 24.
New this year will be a fireworks display to end the fair, held at approximately 9 p.m. Saturday.
"One of our committee members suggested we try it, becuase everyone loves a good fireworks display," Clemens said. "We have a local gentleman that will set off the display, and will be adding a dunk tank this year running all weekend."
Youngsters will compete throughout the weekend in the Farmers Triathlon event, consisting of hay bale throwing, hay bale stacking and pedal tractor pulling. There will be two divisions, an open division and a youth under 14 division, with the winner of each division receiving $50.
The American Dairy Goat Association-sanctioned judging show is set for noon Saturday.
The fair will feature baking contests in conjunction with the Pennsylvania Farm Show. The Northumberland County Fair, in partnership with the Pennsylvania State Association of County Fairs and the state Departments of Agriculture's PA Preferred Program, will sponsor a chocolate cake contest and the chocolate chip cookie, brownie or bar contest.
There will also be a blue ribbon apple pie contest for all types of apple pie. Pies must contain at least 60 percent apples, but may include other fruit ingredients. Contestants are encouraged to use their imagination, and creativity is encouraged.
Another contest is the angel food cake contest, sponsored by Pennsylvania Egg Quality Assurance program (PEQAP). This contest requires the symbol from the egg carton to be presented with the entry. Weis Markets brand of eggs have this symbol on most of their cartons.
The first place winners in the chocolate cake, chocolate chip, brownie and bar contest, apple pie and angel food cake contests will be eligible to enter their creations into the 2014 Pennsylvania Farm Show competitions.
The fair also sponsors contests for the greatest shoofly pie and an upside down cake, in either pineapple, apple or, new for this year, any other fruit.
Canners, bakers and crafters can also enter a number of contests for their items.
Entertainment and family fun
Entertainment for the fair will feature musical acts as Jay Smar, Jim the Singing Mailman, the Midlife Cowboys Band, Peggy Shelly and Friends, The Frank Wicher Band, and K.J. ReimenSnyder-Wagner.
Friday night has been designated as "Family Fun Night" at the fair with the Pet Costume Contest and Parade set for 6:30 p.m.
"We welcome all pet owners and their animals to be a part of the event," the president said.
The annual pedal tractor pull competition, for all ages, is set to start at 7 p.m.
Looking toward the future
Clements and the rest of the fair board, vice president Cash Brezgel, treasurer James W. Temple, and secretary Jane Rebuck and the 40 members of the fair committee hopes everyone will come and see what they have to offer. Parking and admission are free.
"We are strong and have a lot of expectations for the future and one day having a permanent home for the fairgrounds, that will also be avaialble for 4-H, Boy Scouts and many other activities," she said.
More details on the fair and contest rules can be found at the fair's website at www.northumberlandcountyfair.com.