Toronto Guides

Markham Fairgrounds

Your Guide To The Oldest Country Fair in the Greater Toronto Area

Written by Jordan Carter

In the middle of Markham, Ontario, you’ll find the Markham Fairgrounds, a lively place full of community events and traditions. Since 1844, people have gathered here to enjoy a wide range of activities throughout the year. The famous Markham Fair celebrates local farming, crafts, and entertainment. Besides the fair, the grounds host seasonal festivals, trade shows, and concerts, making it a popular spot for everyone.

Now, let’s take a closer look at the fun events and activities that make the Markham Fairgrounds a favorite place for many.

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Markham Fairgrounds

History

The Markham Fairgrounds have a long and rich history. The fair began in 1844, making it one of the oldest in Canada. It started as a small gathering where local farmers could show off their crops, animals, and homemade goods. Over the years, the fair grew and moved to different locations until it settled at its current spot in Markham.

In the early days, the fair was mainly about agriculture, but as time passed, it added more attractions. Now, it includes rides, games, music, and food, making it a fun event for the whole family. The fairgrounds have also become a venue for many other events throughout the year, like festivals, concerts, and trade shows.

The Markham Fairgrounds continue to be a central part of the community, bringing people together to celebrate and enjoy various activities.

Overview

markham fairgrounds overview

The Markham Fairgrounds, located at 10801 McCowan Rd, Markham, ON L3P 3J3, sit at the northeast corner of McCowan Road and Elgin Mills Road. McCowan Road runs north-south and is the first road west of Highway 48 (Markham Road). You can reach the fairgrounds from McCowan Road via exits on Highway 401 and Highway 407. Additionally, the fairgrounds are accessible from Highway 404 through the Elgin Mills Road exit.

Covering over 75,000 square feet, the indoor facilities feature four interconnected exhibit halls that can be used separately or combined to provide up to 45,000 square feet of floor space. These facilities include ATM machines, large overhead drive-in doors, concrete flooring, efficient LED lighting, on-site event services (electrical, cleaning), and wheelchair-accessible public washrooms with baby changing stations. Additional assets like tables and chairs are available for rent. Outdoors, more than 100 acres of green space surround the facility, which also includes a half-mile oval racetrack, a horse ring, and 50 stables. Concert stages, production equipment, hydro and water hookups, and parking for up to 8,000 cars are also available.

Hosting up to 60,000 attendees annually, the fairgrounds see around 3,000 exhibitors entering more than 10,000 items that are judged and displayed during the fair. With extensive indoor and outdoor spaces, the venue is ideal for a variety of events and activities, including carnival rides, agricultural shows, homecraft displays, concerts, trade shows, and seasonal festivals.

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Events

Markham Fair 2024 is set to take place on October 3, 4, 5, and 6, marking its 180th year. This beloved event typically features a variety of attractions, including newborn farm animals at Old MacDonald’s Barn, interactive “Farm to Table” demonstrations at the Agri-Food Tent, and displays of agriculture and homecrafts. Attendees can also enjoy pony rides, monster truck rides, and Faircrow’s Farm Park for kids, along with a selection of delicious food and commercial concessions.

Scheduled for June 22, 2024, the Steering For Friends Automotive Festival will kick off at 9:00 AM. This festival promises an exciting day dedicated to automotive enthusiasts.

For ticket information, it’s best to visit the official Markham Fairgrounds website or contact them directly. Ticket prices can vary based on the event and the type of admission, whether for adults, children, seniors, or families.

Community Guide

markham fairgrounds event guide

Markham Fairgrounds enforce specific rules for events, including a ban on domestic animals. During events like the Markham Fair, around 3,000 exhibitors display over 10,000 items. Detailed guidelines are available on the official website. The fairgrounds can operate at full capacity without vaccination proof, capacity limits, or physical distancing.

The management team coordinates event planning, facility maintenance, and exhibitor arrangements. They ensure all rules are followed for a safe and enjoyable experience, and implement health and safety measures as needed.

The Markham Fairgrounds, with its rich history and vibrant array of events, remains a cornerstone of community life in Markham, Ontario. From the annual Markham Fair to a variety of festivals, trade shows, and concerts, the fairgrounds offer something for everyone. With extensive facilities and dedicated management, the fairgrounds are well-equipped to host large-scale events while ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience for all attendees. Whether you’re visiting for a specific event or simply to enjoy the spacious grounds, the Markham Fairgrounds continue to be a cherished gathering place for the community.

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