BERKELEY – Despite a patch of rough weather, the Ocean County Fair finished strongly, organizers said, as the sun came out on the weekend – the fair’s most important days.
Fair manager Jeff Adams said that the weather didn’t keep people home entirely, it just changed what day they came.
Wednesday and Thursday had threatening thunderstorms and a heat advisory. Friday had rain for most of the day. That pushed everyone over to Saturday and Sunday.
Although actual head counts weren’t available, he said the attendance was well into the thousands on the weekend.
As usual, animal attractions made up a great deal of the entertainment. There were pig races, trained dogs showing off their skills, and horsemanship shows. A petting zoo featured some animals not often seen in Berkeley Township, such as camels, an elephant, and a kangaroo. The 4-H kids showed off the barnyard and home-raised animals they had nurtured.
The 4-H display, still a large portion of the festivities, also displayed projects the kids worked on throughout the year. There were works of art, reports on environmental causes, and even a hamster obstacle course.
A chainsaw carver left behind some work for sale. A local tree removal company would supply him with the logs. Sometimes, it is something unusual, like a blue cedar.
Kids had the opportunity to race remote control cars. Then, they could see the real thing, with some off-road vehicles.
As usual, the interior of the fair was full of tents set up with people selling things like caricatures, t-shirts, arts and crafts. There were also home improvement companies and government offices.
Some rides rose up into the air, overhead of the tents. Some were firmly on the ground, for smaller children to go around a track. There were playhouses for different ability levels or theme: Spongebob to Disney to horror movies.
Mixed in around the rides were a majority of the food vendors. Fair mainstays dominated the choices, including kettle corn, lemonade, cotton candy and deep fried anything.