Central St. Louis Fair Starts Friday, August 19
MEADOWLANDS — The Central St. Louis County Fair, perhaps the county’s smallest fair, takes place in the tiny town of Meadowlands with a population of less than 600. Despite its small size this “little fair that could” draws over 1,000 people to the festivities during the 3-day event.
“What we lack in barns of livestock and gut-turning rides, we make up for in good ol’ fashioned fun with family and friends,” explained Fair President, Angie Simonson. “We’ve made it a goal to add a new thing or two each year, and our fair is slowly growing, both in things to do and in attendance.”
And grow they have, this year adding three new events, a water balloon dodgeball event for kids, an enhanced Car Show with creative awards like “The Cop Magnet” and “Your Vroom, Vroom Brings all the Girls to the Lot”, and a fair must, the Pie Eating Contest on Sunday afternoon.
The fair kicks off Friday night with the Memorial Fireworks show (weather permitting), followed by live music by The Sonny Side outside the Trailside Lounge & Grill.
Saturday morning starts early with the return of the River-to-River 5k event supporting Alzheimer’s Research, a Big Button Hunt where people of all ages search for clues around town to find the “Big Button” in order to win $100. Saturday also has several events for kids, including Cook’s Country Connection Petting Zoo, a Basketball Shootout, backyard-style games, and the new water balloon dodgeball event. Saturday afternoon welcomes Jake Birdseye to the Trailside Stage at 3 p.m. followed by the reunion of Meadowlands’ own Empire Band for the 2nd year in a row. The Meadowlands Fire Department hosts a popular 40 teams Bean Bag Tournament starting at 4 p.m. The day wraps up with the Trailside’s Street Dance featuring Merchants of Swill for a $5 cover.
Sunday is typically the fair’s biggest day with hundreds of folks turning out for their nearly hour-long parade starting at 11:30 am. The parade is free to enter, as is the enhanced car show that follows it. Anyone wanting to participate in the parade should line up at the St. Louis County Garage on Hwy 133 by 11 am. Any cars that want to participate in the car show, but are unable to drive in the parade can find instructions on where to go on the fair’s website.
After the parade, there is more fun for kids, starting with the Lahti Farm Coin Dig. Kids can try and win medals in the Youth Tractor Pull, and showcase their skills in the Lip Sync & Talent Competition where $200 in prizes are given away. The new pie-eating contest takes place at 3:30 p.m. just before the fair’s giant prize drawing of over 125 prizes.
“All weekend fair-goers will find vendors in the park selling crafts, retail items, and more. We also have a fantastic selection of food vendors this year with everything from Cuban Sandwiches, Chinese food, and Fry Bread Tacos to Kettle Corn, Ice Cream, and Mini Donuts,” said Simonson. “This event is 100% volunteer-based by people who love this town and the supporting communities of Cotton, Alborn, Elmer, and Toivola. We work through most of the year to put the event together for our friends, families, and especially the kids in the area – and we couldn’t do it without the amazing support of the townships, sponsors, and those that donate their time, skills, and prizes for our big drawing. When we (the fair board) remember to take a minute from running between events to actually see the community chatting, laughing, and having fun, there’s really an overwhelming feeling of pride and joy for this little fair that could. It keeps us excited to come up with new ideas and continue to grow the event each year.”
The Fair takes place at the community park in Meadowlands from Friday, Aug. 19, through Sunday, Aug. 21. Find more information and a full schedule of events online at meadowlandsfair.net or at Meadowlands Fair on Facebook.