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New FC Fair head has fond memories of event

Steiner newest president of Franklin County Agricultural Society

The Franklin County Fair next year will be headed by Fred “Pete” Steiner, who grew up attending the cattle shows at the annual fair as a child. Submitted Photo

The Franklin County Fair next year will be headed by Fred “Pete” Steiner, who grew up attending the cattle shows at the annual fair as a child. Submitted Photo

A man who grew up a stone’s throw from the site of the Franklin County Fair will now head that fair when it opens in 2014.

Fred “Pete” Steiner of Greenfield is the newest president of the sponsoring Franklin County Agricultural Society and fondly remembers the days when he lived on Petty Plain Road, just off the corner of Wisdom Way.

“I would go to all the cattle shows they had back then,” the 67-year-old former FCAS treasurer explained. “If my parents couldn’t find me, they would come over to the fairgrounds and that’s where they would find me.”

“I eventually bought my own cow,” he said, “but I don’t remember winning any ribbons at the fair.”

He said he spent years helping direct parking on the land at the corner of Petty Plain Road and Wisdom Way, which now is occupied by the solar village there, and the back of the lot that went around to where the other apartments are off Petty Plain Road.

“We could get an awful lot of cars in that lot in those days,” he said. “We were sorry to lose the use of it a couple of years back.”

Steiner joined the FCAS Board in 1998, did work on security, then as assistant treasurer, and as treasurer from 2001 to 2010, when he stepped down to deal with some health issues. He came back healthy, however, doing grounds work. He is now retired and, he said, “ready for this venture.”

Steiner praised the work of his predecessor, Linda Fisher of Greenfield, who stepped down after two years as president, and noted, “She left with increased attendance, new programs and improved financial condition.”

“It was two difficult years, as it was when we went through the process to seek a new midway operation, which we installed this year,” he said, “and she led the way on that.”

He said Fisher plans to follow through on a couple of projects dealing with the fair that she had been doing before becoming president.

Other officers voted by the board are Gary Seeds of Greenfield, first vice president; Shirley Toms of Shelburne, second vice president; Suzanne Hunter of Greenfield, treasurer, and Margaret Saulnier of Greenfield, secretary. Directors elected for three-years terms are: Mary Benedetti, Hunter and Seeds of Greenfield; Russ Coombs and Sue Koch of Shelburne; Kathy Halberg of Buckland and Ken Moulton of Guilford, Vt.

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