Ricky Hanson Video: Bangor Stat Fair
“The Fair” as it’s commonly known, welcomes between 10,000 and 20,000 people each year from across Maine.
One of the country’s oldest fairs, what’s now called the “Bangor State Fair” got its start in September 1849 when the Bangor Horticultural Society organized and held its first exhibition.
Other agricultural groups were hosting their own exhibitions around this time and eventually they came together, including the Maine State Agricultural Society, and held a single event.
In the 1880s, a group of Bangor businessmen formed an organization and changed the name of ‘Maplewood Park’, a popular harness racing spot, to the “Eastern Maine Fairgrounds”. One of those men, Joseph P. Bass owned the land. After Bass’s death, the grounds would be renamed “Bass Park” in his honor.
The ‘Eastern Maine Fair’ was held on the grounds in September 1883—combining the elements of the exhibitions started by the Bangor Horticultural Society with new elements added by the Eastern Maine Fair organizers.
Over time, the name would change to the ‘Bangor State Fair’ and add many of the activities and events we celebrate now like carnival rides, musical performances, demolition derby, fabulous fair food and more!