Pandemic prompts cancellation of 200-year-old fair

Massachusetts

BOSTON (AP) — The coronavirus pandemic has forced the cancellation of a more than 200-year-old Massachusetts agricultural fair for just the third time in its history.

The Essex Agricultural Society, the organization that runs the Topsfield Fair that was scheduled for Oct. 2-12 this year, said Wednesday the decision was made for the safety of fairgoers, staff, volunteers, vendors, exhibitors, and sponsors.

The fair, which began in 1818 and bills itself as America’s oldest fair, has been canceled twice before — in 1918 because of the worldwide flu pandemic, and for three years during World War II.

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