CHATHAM – All Columbia County Fair poultry exhibitors of birds four months and older must bring them for mandatory Pullorum testing on Aug. 5 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the fairgrounds here, Route 203 entrance. Waterfowl, doves and pigeons are excluded from Pullorum testing.
There will be no testing during the fair and this is a requirement to exhibit poultry at any county or New York State fair.
Flock testing for more than 25 birds may be arranged by contacting Kim Volpe at (845) 325-3076 or emailing Kim.Volpe@agriculture.ny.gov. The much-loved poultry competition and exhibit returned to the Columbia County Fair in 2016 after a one-year hiatus after an avian flu outbreak caused the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets to cancel all live fowl exhibits. New York State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball announced the end of the ban on all live fowl competitions and exhibits at the state fair and all 45 county fairs and six youth shows in the state but Pullorum testing is now a requirement.
Poultry Superintendent is Lee DeLong Jr. Entries and payment are due by Aug. 20 and may be mailed to the Columbia County Fair, P.O. Box 257, Chatham NY 12037. Fee is $2.50 per class or $5 for a trio. Entries will be received Aug. 28 from noon to 9 p.m. at the fairgrounds and judging will be Aug. 29 at 4 p.m. The poultry exhibit is sponsored by Agway of Chatham, Claverack, Millerton and Great Barrington.
Remaining true to its agricultural roots, the fair features poultry, dairy and beef cattleand sheep competitions and exhibits. The price of a ticket allows fairgoers to enjoy these exhibits plus others such as scarecrows, a sunflower contest, a wool booth exhibit, fruits and vegetables, an antique tractor pull and oxen demonstrations. Quilting, domestic arts and crafts and photography, a giant pumpkin contest, amateur craft beer, wine and cider are other exhibits and contests featured at the fair.
Amusements of America will offer 30 amusement rides this year, including many for younger children. All-day ride passes will be offered each day. Children ages 12 and under continue to get in free daily. Active military personnel with ID or in uniform are also admitted free. On Thursday, Aug. 31 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., senior citizens will be admitted for $5 and youth ages 18 and under will be admitted free. Parking for the entire six-day fair run is free.
This year’s 177th annual fair opens August 30 and runs through Labor Day, September 4 daily from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m., except for opening day when the gates swing open at noon.