Stormont County Agricultural Society recognizes Helmers

Stormont County Agricultural Society President David Zummach (left) presents the OAAS agricultural diploma to longtime Stormont Fair volunteers Jack and Joyce Helmer. Zandbergen photo, Nation Valley News

Preparations for 150th anniversary of fair and country

Nelson Zandbergen
Nation Valley News

FINCH — Like Canada itself, the Stormont County Fair celebrates its 150th anniversary this summer.

Preparations for the upcoming milestone were among the discussed highlights at the Stormont County Agricultural Society’s annual general meeting, Jan. 21. For example, look for potential new historical recipe classes in the homecraft competitions at the Labour Day weekend fair.

Society members, who filled the boardroom at the South Nation Conservation building, also honoured Jack and Joyce Helmer with the annually conferred Ontario Association of Agricultural Societies (OAAS) Agricultural Service Diploma.

The couple have volunteered with the Newington-based Stormont County Fair for many years — with Jack involved with horse-related attractions for over half a century. Initially part of the light-horse racehorse committee, he moved on to the heavy horse committee when racing was discontinued. He also served as president in 1976 and past president from 1977 through 1982.

Joyce has been a fixture overseeing the flower competitions and helping out in the exhibit hall.

Now living in Avonmore, the Helmers resided in Newington through much of their service, which they are winding down this year.

“We were married in 1960 and we started then with helping at the fair,” Joyce recalled.

“They’ve been with us through thick and thin,” said longtime fair board member Elmer Stewart, who happily added that members of the Simmons family have stepped up to assist on the heavy horse committee following Jack’s retirement.

 

Some key members of the 2017 Stormont County Agricultural Society executive (from left) President David Zummach, Secretary/Treasurer Barbara-Ann Glaude, 1st Vice Morris Dusomos and 2nd Vice Jeff Waldroff. Zandbergen photo, Nation Valley News

Some key members of the 2017 Stormont County Agricultural Society executive (from left) President David Zummach, Secretary/Treasurer Barbara-Ann Glaude, 1st Vice President Morris Dusomos and 2nd Vice President Jeff Waldroff. Zandbergen photo, Nation Valley News