NORTH CANTON Each June, the North Canton Jaycees set up a five-day fundraising fair which has become a summertime tradition for the community. It’s a family-friendly, fun time with a variety of food, rides and games for kids and adults.
Proceeds from the fair help fund the many service projects the North Canton Jaycees host throughout the year. Those include Special Olympics, Safety Town and the Fourth of July parade and fireworks (the Celebration in the Park).
"The Jaycees have been hosting this event since 1951 and it always has a nice mix of people attending including kids, adults, parents and grandparents," said Jaycees public relations specialist Trevor Ivan. "It usually draws several thousand people every year from North Canton and around Stark County. We always have a variety of activities so that everyone has something to enjoy. The kids have the rides, the adults have the gaming tent and everybody enjoys the food."
Most of the fundraising happens in the Jaycee Charitable Gaming Tent featuring Texas Hold ‘Em, Black Jack, a horserace wheel and chuck-a-luck. The gaming tent is for adults only.
"We had at least a dozen more vendors this year with several new food vendors," said North Canton Jaycees President Stephanie Sweany.
New Baltimore Ice Cream from Hartville was one of the new food vendors along with Kona Ice, Otterbacher Concessions and Doanville’s Food.
Fair chairperson Abigail Tanner said Mohler True Value was one of the major sponsors along with Slick Woody’s Cornhole Company and the Akron-Canton Airport. Creative Source helped with the banners and other signs.
Jaycees officials agreed that the event draws so many people because of several factors including having so much entertainment all in one spot, and it’s close to the neighborhoods in North Canton where people can easily walk to and from the fair.
"The Jaycee Fair is literally in the backyard of many of the neighborhoods," Ivan said. "It’s become a family tradition that this community supports every year."
The annual fair, which this year ran from June 11-14, generates between $15,000 to $16,000. For decades, it has been located across from the North Canton YMCA pool on Seventh Street. Bates Brothers Amusement provided the rides.