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Busy Summer at the Fairgrounds in Hamburg

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Erie County Fair highlights special events taking place at multi-use facility

By Daniel Meyer

Western New York’s largest and most flexible event facility should be one of your premiere summertime destinations over the next six weeks as a variety of special events take place at The Fairgrounds in Hamburg.

Of course, the Erie County Fair is the Fairgrounds’ showcase event and this year is no different as the 176th edition of the 12-day celebration takes place on the 265-acre campus located in the Town of Hamburg. But in addition to this summertime centerpiece, The Fairgrounds also will play host to a rock concert featuring two nationally touring acts, as well as a major national convention that is expected to bring in wildlife enthusiasts from all across the country.

“The Fairgrounds is Western New York’s entertainment destination and 2015 has proven that with the wide variety of events and activities that we have hosted so far and still have scheduled to take place through the end of the year,” said Martin Biniasz, director of entertainment and special projects marketing manager for the Erie County Agricultural Society, the private not-for-profit membership organization that annually produces the Erie County Fair.

Next week features live musical performances from two bands as radio station WEDG-FM, “103.3 The Edge,” presents Breaking Benjamin with special guest band Starset on Friday, July 24 in The Event Center on The Fairgrounds. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the concert begins at 8 p.m.

Breaking Benjamin has achieved worldwide success over the past decade and has gained a strong following throughout the country because of its electrifying and highly entertaining live performances.

Starset, too, has gained a strong fan base with its stylistically ambitious brand of rock music that is the brainchild of Dustin Bates, who was previously best known for his work as the lead singer of the group Downplay.

For more information about the concert, including how to purchase tickets, visit www.rapidstheatre.com or call (716) 205-8925, x2.

The National Trappers Association will host its 56th annual convention and sports show for three days this summer inside four different buildings on The Fairgrounds, marking the first time the event has ever taken place in Western New York. Scheduled from Thursday, July 30 through Saturday, August 1 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., the event will include hundreds of vendors, demonstrations and educational seminars. For more information, visit www.nationaltrappers.com.

The Erie County Fair gets started August 12 and runs through August 23. Looking to build off of the momentum from last year in which a new attendance record was set, some new features this year are sure to attract people of all ages.

“The Erie County Fair is now listed as the third largest fair in North America and one of the reasons we consistently remain popular is the constant introduction of new attractions and exhibits,” said Biniasz.

“This year we are excited to be introducing our ‘Little Hands on the Farm’ interactive exhibit that is sure to be popular with children. It’s a great example of how we provide hands-on educational experiences about agriculture.”

The free exhibit, open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., allows children to participate in various “farm chores” that include milking a cow, planting crops, driving a tractor and working in a chicken coop. Then they’ll be able to convert their hard work into “cash” and spend it at a “farmers market” to purchase a snack for their efforts.

Biniasz also notes that during this year’s Erie County Fair the various exhibit buildings will open an hour earlier, at 9 a.m., and there will be free fireworks displays on August 12, August 20 and August 23.

“We say it every year, but the Erie County Fair has something for everyone,” said Biniasz. “Free entertainment, great food, outstanding musical entertainers and the livestock barns are just a few to be mentioned as we look to build on last year’s record-breaking year and continue to offer fun for the whole family.”

For more information about the Erie County Fair, visit www.ecfair.org or call (716) 649-3900.

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