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Randolph Fair is fast approaching once again! It is always an uplifting, busy week that includes lots of laughter for the many volunteers that work at the Mogadore Christian Church Food Booth. Pooling our time and talents for this important fundraiser is what really makes it a great success every year.

I read up on some history of this longstanding event, and here’s a little summary. For more history go online to:

The first Randolph Fair was held on October 15, 1858, beside the road on Route 44. Vegetables, fruits, and grains were displayed in the schoolhouse. The original admission cost 10 cents per person, plus 10 cents per horse and buggy. The fair started as a three-day event, but in the early 1900's it switched to a two-day event. However, the big event lasted only a few hours in 1870. It rained so hard that everyone packed up their displays and went home!

By the time the Randolph Fair celebrated a very special 100th Anniversary in 1958, the price of admission had soared to 50 cents per person, plus 25 cents per car! (Hard to imagine, isn’t it?)

Not surprisingly, many changes have taken place throughout the years. While it started as one-day fair and grew to a two-day fair, it eventually settled into a three-day fair and moved from October to September. In 1963, the organizers decided that August was an even better month for the fair. By 1975 it became what we now celebrate: six days of fun in the sun (and sometimes rain).

For the last 4 years, my highlight of the Randolph Fair has been, without question, the Mogadore Christian Church Food Booth. We have the best people “working” there, and the tastiest menu. Based on customer feedback, we also provide the best food prices anywhere at the Fair. That means a whole lot when families sacrifice to take their children out for a day of fun at the fair, and all of those hungry stomachs need to be filled.

I put “working” in quotes, because of course no one gets paid to work at the Food Booth. Everyone willingly volunteers to work one, two, three or more 6 hour shifts. The time passes quickly – especially when we are really busy!

In case you’re wondering if you have it in you “to work” at the Fair, this year, think about the amazing perks! Though often busy, the lulls in the activity, let us kick back and tell stories with others who are on our same shifts. There is always time to chat with new and old friends who stop by the booth to buy something of our delicious food. The complements they pay feel pretty good too!

Our church has been involved in the Randolph Fair since 1958. The Friendship Class started it all, and the Esther Class baked the goodies. Their initial commodities included pie and coffee. Just like everything else, much has changed over the years. They made a sizable total of $200.00 in 1958. For the last seven years we have averaged $8,488.64 per year – in 2010 we brought in $ 8,872.97, and it was shared in these ways:

  • In 2010, Missions - $ 2,218.24 for various causes
  • Evangelism - $ 2,218.24 for VBS
  • New Creation Youth Group received $1,330.95

That last budget item sent several teens to Camp Carl. They are at camp right now, even as I write this article, enjoying new ways to learn about Jesus Christ.

The rest of the money is used to pay the start up fees for the next year at the fair, and often for some “big” project at church – this past year, that project included essential computers for the church.

The Mogadore Church Food Booth is the only place I eat at the fair. Terry & I have really been impressed at the awesome set up, the cleanliness, the great menu, low prices, fun specials and how appetizing the food has been! We enjoy “working” at the Food Booth and look forward to being out there again this year.

We would love to have you join in the fun. If you have never been to the Randolph Fair and would like to help out this year, we welcome you warmly. No training needed, just wear running shoes, cool clothes and bring your smile! It’s a great way to get to know your church family. There is a sign-up sheet on the table in the Keystone Classroom at the church. Positions are on a first come, first serve basis. Sign up early, and sign up often!

~Pastor J

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