It’s More Than Just the Erie County Fair

Spacious facility hosts events throughout the year

By Daniel Meyer

With more than 265 acres of land dotted with various sized buildings adaptable for many uses, Hamburg Fairgrounds, Western New York’s largest event facility, remains one of the premiere places to host a special event. Whether it is live musical performances, seasonal festivals or charity fundraisers, the facility is so much more than the 12 days in August when it plays host to the Erie County Fair.

Among the events that have taken place in the past at Hamburg Fairgrounds, which is billed by staff as “Western New York’s entertainment destination,” are the recently held Plantasia Garden and Landscape Show, the Western New York Sport and Travel Expo, the Shrine Circus, the Western New York Home and Garden Expo, the Western New York RV Show and the annual Fairgrounds Festival of Lights holiday decoration display. Already scheduled for next year is the sixth annual Western New York Farm Show, set to take place in February 2016.

According to a recent economic impact study focused on non-Erie County residents, Hamburg Fairgrounds attracts close to 1.4 million visitors each year by people who live outside Erie County. Spending by those out-of-area visitors generates approximately $67.6 million, which keeps cash registers on site as well as in the surrounding areas ringing before, during and after special events that take place there.

Among the events scheduled to take place over the next few weeks:

Springtime in the Country –Fairgrounds Event Center. Traditionally ranked as one of the top 25 events in the entire county, this year’s show will feature 200 artisans from across North America displaying a wide variety of products. A new feature this year is a complimentary return pass, which allows patrons to return for free all weekend. The show will be open Friday, March 27 from 4 – 9 p.m.; Saturday, March 28 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, March 29 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at the door at $7 for adults; children under 12 are free.

Buffalo Showtime Spring Classic – Fairgrounds Showplex. Known as the “Hunter Jumper Horse Show,” this three-day program involves rated sections that are official point competitions for the United States Equestrian Federation’s award programs for national and regional honors. Competitions take place on Friday, March 27 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, March 28 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.; and Sunday, March 29 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Hamburg Area Business Showcase – Grange Building. This day-long event, sponsored by the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, showcases the products and services of some 40 businesses from the Hamburg area on Friday, March 27 from 1-8 p.m. Longtime businesses, relatively new companies and various organizations will be present to answer questions and provide plenty of opportunities to interact at this free event, which is geared toward the entire family. In addition to retail shopping and supporting local businesses, concessions and a cash bar will be available along with raffle items.

Empire State Beef Classic – Agriculture Discovery Center. This beef cattle show is presented by the Erie County Agricultural Society. There is no cost to attend and observe exhibitors from throughout New York State showing their cattle in an event designed to lead up to local county fairs and the state fair later this year. Events take place on Friday, April 10 from noon to 9 p.m.; Saturday, April 11 from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sunday, April 12 from 9 a.m. to noon.

For more information about Hamburg Fairgrounds, including other events scheduled to take place later this year, visit www.the-fairgrounds.com or call (716) 649-3900.