Douglas Ryner brushes twin cows Thelma and Louise at the Evergreen State Fair on Sept. 1, 2019, in Monroe. (Olivia Vanni / Herald file)

Douglas Ryner brushes twin cows Thelma and Louise at the Evergreen State Fair on Sept. 1, 2019, in Monroe. (Olivia Vanni / Herald file)

11 days of glee: Evergreen State Fair ‘Back in the Saddle’

The fair was called off in 2020 due to COVID-19. Organizers are planning a revised event this year.

MONROE — Scones could replace shots at the Evergreen State Fairgrounds this summer.

After months of mass COVID-19 testing and vaccines, the Monroe fairgrounds are expected to be filled with squealing pigs and kids when the Evergreen State Fair is revived after being called off in 2020.

“We are doing our best to make sure that we can have a fair,” fair division manager Jeremy Husby said. “We will know for sure 30 days before the fair. We’ll plan to have it until we are told otherwise.”

COVID metrics, safety and guidelines at fair time will determine if it’s a go.

The fair is slated to run Aug. 26 through Sept. 6, closing for one day on Sept. 1.

The theme is “Back in the Saddle Again — Open for Fun in 2021” — a cheerful metaphor for all the dusting off after the challenging ride of the pandemic.

“It’s about showing we’re resilient and that we want to be here for the community and give people hope,” Husby said.

This year will be the 112th fair. The fair was not held three years in a row as a result of the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918, and twice during World War II.

Last year’s cancellation was a blow not only to the 350,000 people who attend as a tradition of summer joy but also the vendors and area businesses that rely on income from the fair. The fair is one of the largest events in the county.

The rides, games and elephant ears will be served up with modifications. There will be increased sanitation, capacity limits, social distancing and mask usage.

“Snohomish County welcomes some celebration after a year of struggle and sacrifice,” County Executive Dave Somers said in a news release. “While the Evergreen State Fair may be a bit different this year, we’re looking forward to getting everyone ‘Back in the Saddle Again!’”

The fair requires hundreds of volunteers.

“It’s like setting up a small city,” Husby said. “For all the exhibits, 832 different types of categories get judged every year. Everything from knitting to animal livestock, different breeds, beer, cakes, cookies, floral culture.”

Cowboys and bucking broncos won’t be providing thrills.

“We’re not planning to have a rodeo this year,” Husby said. “We’re trying to have everything else.”

Scones, of course.

“That’s my number one question today: ‘Where do I get in line for scones now?’” Husby said.

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Andrea Brown:; 425-339-3443. Twitter @reporterbrown.

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