Get your prized pumpkins and cucumbers together because it’s almost time for the Kootenay Country Fair.
Of course, there are many things to do and see at the annual event that celebrates the area and the season.
Trudy Larson, president of the Kootenay Country Fair Society, said the event is shaping up to be a great one.
Larson said they are expecting upwards of 3,000 people at the event. She noted Fort Steele is unique in that no matter how many people are in attendance, it never feels crowded.
The fair takes place on Sunday, Sept. 13, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and has 20 different events. The events are put together by a dedicated group of ladies from the society.
That includes the garden produce category, where potatoes, beans, carrots and other prized produce will be judged on quality, form, condition and appeal.
Entry forms have to be in by Sept. 8 for the various categories that will be judged.
Then they are brought in on Saturday after 1:30 p.m. then are judged. On Sunday the entries are displayed with their awards.
“Then we have an auction in the afternoon, it’s usually preserves and baking and all the vegetables that are left — most people just leave their vegetables and their flowers and we auction them off at the end of the day,” she said.
Then there are sections dedicated to the dog show, cut flowers and potted plants, home baking and much more.
Entertainment is all lined up including musical talents of the the Good Ol’ Goats, a barber shop quartet and many more.
“Most of them — except for two acts — will be wandering the fort singing,” she said.
In the morning, from 9 a.m. to around 11 a.m. there will be a pancake breakfast which will raise funds for the fight against juvenile cancer.
Then there are kids’ games at 1 p.m. Those include old fashioned games like sack races and egg toss, a pie eating contest, as well as other age-appropriate games.
This year the dog show was slimmed down from 10 categories to five for this year.
“For that you register at 2 p.m. and the show is at 2:30 p.m.” she said. “Dogs are welcome at Fort Steele on leashes.
There will be a fruit and vegetable truck with fresh produce for sale. There will be plenty of other vendors as well.
She said that has been something that people in the past have always asked for, and this year it is happening.
Fort Steele itself will have a lot of its own events on such as wagon rides, and the train. The 4-H Club will bring sheep and goats out.
This year, there are four locations for advanced tickets.
“We’re trying advanced this year because there’s always such a line at the gate,” she said. “So if you get your tickets in advance there will be a special gate to go through.”
The advanced tickets can be purchased in Cranbrook at the Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce and the Choice, or in Kimberley at the Kimberley Chamber of Commerce as well as the Snowdrift Cafe.
The Kootenay Country Fair was started in Wycliffe years ago.
“So it was a very small, little fair at the Wycliffe exhibition grounds,” she said. “About 11 years ago now we moved it to Fort Steel and carried on.”
The society is helped by a grant from Columbia Basin Trust Community Initiatives Group. That has helped them keep the tickets prices as low as possible — $4 for an adult and $15 for a family.