Fair was less accessible for seniors, handicapped

With all the improvements the Erie County Fair made this past year, my wife, Renee, and I looked forward to going and parking in a handicap space close to a gate, riding the tram that circumvents the active area of the fair from the livestock area around the track by way of the horse arena, the dome to the South Park entrance. The tram gives one a quick view of the major sites and vendors that orients a visitor to distances between sites.

We arrived only to be told by the gate attendant that handicapped parking in that area was full. The first part of our plan was a bust. So we proceeded to park in an open spot farther from the entrance than we wanted. With cane in hand, we proceeded to Gate 3. There we bought our tickets and asked directions to the tram. “Sorry, Sir! No tram this year. The tram was too dangerous with the crowd.” So, for previous fairs, trams were a real treat. Now seeing any part of the fair would be a challenge.

The walk from Gate 3 to the livestock site was exhausting. We found the Agriculture Discovery Center, which was fascinating, but we were getting tired. We walked up to the track and watched the All American Youth Band form and parade away playing a rousing Sousa. We decided we should get something to eat and leave.

The walk back to Gate 3 and our car was slower. We saw very little of the fair in three hours.

Attendance at the fair is a fabulous experience that should be pleasant and enjoyable for all who enter the gate. Any problem that fair management sees in the tram and handicap parking needs to be resolved so everyone can look forward, by the grace of God, to go to future exciting fairs there.

Renee and J. Peter Foley