OTTAWA -- Tens of thousands of people are expected to pack the Carp Fairgrounds this weekend for the Carp Fair.

This year there are some new rules to keep people safe. Masks and proof of vaccination are mandatory for indoor events.

Carp Fair volunteer Margie Cox says once you prove you’re vaccinated, you get a green bracelet. 

"Once you have the green bracelet on, it’s good for the weekend and you can go in and out of the buildings safely," says Cox. "As long as you have a mask on at the same time."

Kids and adults alike were taking in all the fair had to offer. 

"Having been raised close by, it is just neat to see people from the community start include little ones," says Jenna Ross. "It becomes a family tradition."

Neil Falls is the Agriculture President for the Carp Fair. He says this year they aren’t holding back with the celebration.

"This year we have full programming," says Falls. "It’s going to be the same style of events that you would have seen at traditional Carp Fair’s in the past. We’re still going to have a cattle shows, beef and dairy. We’re still going to have the sheep shows, the light horse shows, the heavy horse show. We’ve just changed up the formatting a little bit to better accommodate for COVID."

The Carp Fair has been around since 1863. In its 158-year history, the fair has only been cancelled once, last year due to COVID.

Carp Fair

"There’s no better feeling to have the fair back and to give back to the community,” says Falls. "And thank them for all the support and the outcry of help that we’ve had over the last 18 months. It’s the ultimate payback for them to get everyone out and the families out and have a good time."

Families packed the fair, most of them here for the rides. 

"I love the rides," says Zachary Laporte. "Everything about the rides are really fun. It gets my energy up."

"It’s really big and open, so there's lots of space," says Payton Bowie. "And with COVID and everything its really great because you don’t have to wear your mask the whole time, and you can socially distance."

Carp Fair

“I love how it’s just part of our community and it's just great to see all your school friends. And a bunch of friends from outside Carp come see Carp and see how local and nice Carp really is," says Hailee Mcgillivary.

The absence of the fair last year just means that this year is set to be bigger and better than ever.

"Enjoy the fair. Enjoy the food. Enjoy the amusements and all the exhibits and shows that we have to offer," says Falls.

The Carp Fair runs until Sunday and tickets can be purchased online.