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Everything to do at the Western Fair District

Artwork of the Western Fair District
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The Western Fair District, located at 316 Rectory St. in London’s east end, is home to various fun activities throughout the year.

“Western Fair Association was founded in 1867 through the amalgamation of the East Middlesex Agricultural Society and the London District Horticultural and Agricultural Society,” according to the Western Fair website. “The first official meeting of the Western Fair Association was held the following year, which was also the inaugural year for the annual Western Fair.”

But there’s more to the Western Fair District than just the annual Western Fair. There are activities open yearly at the district, allowing people to attend whenever they see fit. The Gateway Casino is open to people aged 19 and up and has a variety of tables and slots. The grounds also host a fine dining restaurant known as Top of the Fair. The restaurant is located on the third floor of the Grandstand building at 900 King St. and includes a great view of the horse racetrack, allowing guests to enjoy a great meal while watching (and betting on!) the races down below. The horse racing season is from October ‘til May, with races happening three to four days a week depending on the weather. When the track is closed, you can still catch horse racing action from across the continent.

“...there’s more to the Western Fair District than just the annual Western Fair.”

“We are open seven days a week for simulcast racing! You can bet on many different tracks all over North America,” according to their website.

Lastly, the Western Fair Market is open Saturday and Sunday all year long, featuring many locally grown foods and lots of homemade vendors.

Fanshawe grad, Wade Kennedy has been to Western Fair District for many reasons but said he would come all the way from Crediton, Ont. to go to the market.

“My favourite thing to do at the district is attend the weekend market and get local sourced fresh foods. I also really enjoy having a boys’ night out at the casino and spending a good time with my buddies playing roulette and other games,” he said.

Then there are the many conventions held at the Western Fair Agriplex. The 2023 London Farm Show, held in March, is the largest spring farm show in eastern Canada, featuring over 370 exhibitors and 230,000 square feet of show space, showcasing the latest in agricultural technology and equipment.

Of course, there is no better way to close out the summer than with the Western Fair. This year’s fair will be held from Sept. 8–16. With over 30 different rides and many vendors, this fair is the biggest in southwestern Ont.

The Western Fair District has lots of other activities and events including their Sports Centre, live events, and conferences. Their mission is to create unique experiences that fulfil the evolving entertainment, recreational and educational interests of their customers, according to their website.

“I love attending the Western Fair and riding on amazing rides and enjoying the vendors that participate in it. The district brings lots of excitement to London, I believe it is one of my favourite places to go when I go to London,” said Kennedy.