CHRONICLE FILE PHOTO - Participants are eager to dress up and enjoy the Oregon Country Fair after the Covid era.

Started in 1969 as a benefit for an alternative school, the Oregon Country Fair has a rich and varied history of alternative arts and performance promotion, educational opportunities, land stewardship and philanthropy. On July 8, 9 and 10, the fair will return, in the flesh, to Veneta, Oregon for their 53rd annual event. 

“Innovation and technology kept us together the past two years, but nothing compares to a face to face Oregon Country Fair for the sights, sounds, and smells that create the magic the Fair offers all who grace its grounds,” Kirsten Bolton, the Oregon Country Fair’s General Manager. 

“We can’t wait for the gates to open to see thousands of fair-goers coming on site to experience the offerings from the musicians, performers, artists, and food vendors who will help rejuvenate us as we come out of COVID-19 and manage many of the world’s new realities,” she said. 

This year, the OFC has partnered with Lane Transit District (LTD) to provide free bus service for those who have a ticket to the Fair, to encourage all fairgoers to use public transportation. This free service is offered on all LTD routes.

The OFC annually features 18 stages of entertainment, more than 80 food booths, and nearly 350 craft booths highlighting more than 700 vendors. 

Bolton says it will be exciting to see fair-goers reacquaint themselves with all the wonderful entertainment, art, and personal expression as in past years, however, all will need to comply with the Fair’s COVID-19 vaccination requirements. “It is important that we all stay healthy,” Bolton says. “Complying with CDC requirements is something we are all doing at sometime or another during our travel, work, and socializing.”

Masks covering the nose and mouth will not be necessary, but OCF will require all public attendees to provide proof of a full and up-to-date COVID-19 vaccination, with the option for a religious or medical exemption, in compliance with the ADA regulations, in the form of a negative COVID-19 test administered by a licensed test provider, laboratory, or health care provider, 24 hours prior to the date of entry, in order to attend the Fair in 2022. Documentation of vaccination status, along with valid ID, must be shown upon entry to the event. 

Tickets go on sale Friday, April 1. Individual ticket prices are $40 for Friday, July 8 and 9; and $35 for Sunday, July 10. Children ages 10 and under are admitted free with a ticketed adult and there is a $5 discount for individuals who are alter-abled or age 65 or older. No admission tickets are sold at the fair site, and all tickets are available online at ticketswest.com.