WELLINGTON — The Lorain County Fair will be serving alcohol for the first time ever this summer.
The County Fair Board approved a beer garden to be at the fairgrounds on the east side of the grandstand. The garden is expected to be about a 1,200- to 1,600-square-foot fenced-in area with landscaping and entertainment as well as a tented area. It will be open from 4 to 11 p.m.
Fair board member Kim Meyers said the decision came after numerous requests, much planning and research of other Ohio county fairs and attractions such as Cedar Point and Kings Island and the Ohio State Fair.
“The times are changing and we feel that because of the requests and the demand, we feel that it was appropriate to make the change,” he said.
The fair has never allowed the sale of alcohol on fair grounds. The board held discussions last fall and changed its constitution in November to allow the sale and consumption of beer. The beer garden was approved a couple months ago at a meeting.
Fairgoers will be allowed to drink the beer in the fenced-in area at the beer garden after proving they are of legal age to drink. Additionally, fairgoers can purchase beer and bring it with them to the grandstand area. People will have to either finish their beer or throw it away before leaving the designated areas.
There will be a limit of how many beers customers can buy at one time, but not a total limit on how many beers people can drink. That being said, security will be present in the beer garden and Lorain County Sheriff deputies will be present in the grandstand area as well as near the entrance and exits of both areas.
If things go well this year, Meyers said the beer garden probably will continue to be a part of the fair.