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Community Roots: Selections from the Local Legacies Project
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Scene from Horse Show
Scene from Horse Show. Courtesy Sussex County Farm & Horse Show

Sussex County Farm and Horse Show

This ten-day event, "New Jersey's Best Fair," has become the premier agricultural fair in the state. The 1999 event, the 63rd annual show, attracted approximately 200,000 fairgoers. The fair originated as a one-day horse show in 1936 in Branchville. In addition to the signature event, the Horse Show, there is a Family Entertainment Area, Performing Arts Tent, Craft Tent, and a Queen of the Fair Pageant. The Horse Show had a special barrel-racing class with a $5,500 purse, which drew a big crowd. Many local organizations such as the Grange and Rotary Clubs participate, with the help of two thousand volunteers. The theme of the 1999 show was "Volunteers Make It Happen," and a "Star of the Day" was chosen to be honored each day from among the many volunteers. The 1999 event was attended by such VIPs as New Jersey Senator Robert Littrell, U.S. Congresswoman Marge Roukema, and New Jersey Governor Christie Whitman. On September 1, 1999, the Sussex County Farm and Horse Show was officially designated "The New Jersey State Fair."

The project is documented with several pages of text, postcards, and brochures, flyers, a registration and entry guide, and a program for the1999 event.

Originally submitted by: Marge Roukema, Representative (5th District).

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The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.

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