LC Fair 2019 4-H sheep showmanship

4-H youth compete in the sheep showmanship demonstration.

For what would have been the 85th running of the Loudoun County Fair, organizers have decided to cancel this year's events due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Arlee Harris, fair superintendent, told the Times-Mirror it was a really tough decision. The fair was scheduled for July 21 through July 26.

Harris said the board of directors did not want to keep people waiting for a decision.

"It became clear it might not be plausible, not knowing the crowd restrictions that would be in place. It was the unknown, and we needed to give people time to prepare," Harris said. "We are concerned about the health of our 4-H-ers, their families, our volunteers and the community, and we did not want to take the chance of people getting sick. This breaks my heart to cancel."

Fair organizers have decided to instead organize a virtual show and sale on the same week. 

"Our mission is to support the 4-H kids. We are still working on the details. It is most important to still have something for the kids. They will make videos of their animals, and there will be virtual judging. It is the best we can do right now," Harris said.

More information can be found on the fair's website,

(6) comments


It is a huge disappointment that the Loudoun Fair and Associates/Fairboard made such a rash decision so early. So many children are hurt by this decision. Some livestock projects are a full year around project, while other livestock projects are May-July. These kids put in literal blood, sweat and tears into what they do. They look forward to the fair to show off their hard work and look forward to the sale to complete out their year. This decision could of been put off longer. Seems like it was made in hast. Virtual livestock shows do not provide that full experience the children are looking for and not what they have worked for. There is no possible way fully accurate judging could occur for these children without a live show. Judges must feel muscle condition and fat covering. They must be able to compare animals side by side when their decision comes down to two. The community businesses that support these children look forward to the buyers dinner and interacting with these kids throughout the week. They will be missing out on the hands on opportunity to check out the livestock before making a purchase. All of these things are so important and that seems to be lost in the sauce of the decision. As a 4-H alumni I am disappointed that other options were not explored for the sake of the children and their hard work.

Good luck kids!


The organizers deserve credit for taking a decision well in advance of the event.

Phil Tatler

I want to be as kind as possible, but the word "Virtual" no longer has any positive or attractive meaning for me.


I "virtually" won't attend.The Clarke County Fair is far superior and is held in August.


Couldn't agree more. The surround counties all have excellent fairs and programs for the kids!


A virtual county fair? Somehow that just doesn't seem like it will have the same feel.

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