Dover Fair, 1857-1897
The Dover Agricultural and Mechanical Fair was held each year from 1857-1897 on grounds located behind the current Lee Burneson Middle School on Dover Center Road.
The fair was put on by the Dover Agricultural and Mechanical Society, an organization formed to promote improvements in those two fields. The festival normally lasted two days and was usually held each September.
The Society itself was purely a Dover Township affair, but the fair attracted visitors in large numbers from surrounding towns.
The fair typically included livestock shows, a fine arts hall, horse exhibits, and – the big attraction – a one-third mile horse racing track. Also offered was a “warm lunch” hall, two refreshment areas and a bandstand.
As time went on, a movement began to establish a county fair. The first Cuyahoga County Fair was held in 1896 in Berea (where it remains) and the last Dover fair was held in 1897.