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Street fair set for August

CORTLAND — The Cortland Street Fair is going to happen in 2021, albeit later in the summer compared to previous years.

Basil Jarrett, a member of the Cortland Lions Club, said the three-day event will be Aug. 12, 13 and 14. He said a parade will be 6 p.m. Saturday as well.

City councilwoman Kathy Fleischer said the move to later in the year could benefit city residents.

“The street fair has always been in June, but holding it later will be better for Cortland residents because we will have more to offer than usual,” Fleischer said.

The fair comes after a bumpy, pandemic-riddled 2020 in which essentially all outdoor events canceled due to COVID-19. Among the cancellations was the Cortland Street Fair. Other notable events canceled last year were the Trumbull County Fair, the Canfield Fair in Mahoning County and the Weathersfield Flag Day Festival, which just ended Saturday.

This year, however, due in part to the uptick in vaccinations distributed and Gov. Mike DeWine lifting all health orders that would call for outdoor venues to promote masks and social distancing, the fair can continue as remembered in the past. Jarrett said trying to plan the event with COVID-19 in mind was “very hard.”

“They’ve opened up now and our event is outdoors, so that helps a lot,” Jarrett said.

He added that residents of Cortland are expressing their excitement for the fair returning.

“I think if anything, people are excited to have it again because we didn’t last year,” Jarrett said.

Fleischer has lived in Cortland for many years, going through the school system and now serving on council. She said she has fond memories of the fair, and it has become something of a tradition for she and her friends.

Fleischer added that the fair typically serves as a reunion for Lakeview graduates or former residents. She said people are excited to see their old friends and classmates.

Social media, specifically the Everything Cortland page, has been buzzing with excitement. Fleischer said the running joke on the page is “when the fair will be” because of its usual starting date.

“Up until this year it’s always been in June, but now, the way social media has changed, the dates are posted and people are excited,” she said.

The fair also serves another purpose — as a fundraiser for the Lions Club.

“It’s the biggest fundraiser for the club in Cortland. We help not only Cortland, but other communities as well,” Jarrett said.

“The money raised from the fair goes to the Lions Club, and they, in turn, donate it to various causes,” Fleischer said.

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