You Think You Know the Western Montana Fairgrounds? Here’s Five Fair Facts
The Western Montana Fair in Missoula, Montana has a long, rich history alongside the annual tradition of showcasing agriculture, education and entertainment as well as putting new technology and science into the spotlight.
Prior to the current home of the Missoula County Fairgrounds, the land was owned and operated by the Western Montana Agricultural, Mechanical and Mineral Association, Inc. In 1874, the fairgrounds became incorporated by Missoula County Courthouse in November 1874.
The first fair was organized and held in 1875.
Back in 1876, a race track one-mile long and 60 feet wide was built for $400.
The fair had to be cancelled for a few years following the 1880 a small-pox epidemic.
The Missoula County Fairgrounds, after moving to various locations around town, finally settled in the location most are currently familiar with and was purchased by County Commisioners in 1911 for only $16,000.
Every food vendors at the fair partners with non-profits for annual fund raising efforts. Just recently, 13 of 26 concession vendors gave 100% of their profits back to their organization, the rest giving 50/50. Just within the year, the Western Montana Fair helped contribute over $16,000 to local organizations.