Our View: Keep the fair fun and safe | TheUnion.com

Our View: Keep the fair fun and safe

Like a distant friend, gone too long, the fair is finally back.

It had become tradition, the Nevada County Fair, a staple like Thanksgiving with the grandparents or the birthday cake from your favorite bakery. You counted on the fair, knowing it would always be there.

Until, of course, it wasn’t.

The COVID-19 pandemic shuttered almost every public event. Communities across the globe closed the doors and windows. Businesses locked their doors, some of them for good. And the world hunkered down to wait for a vaccine.

Now it’s here, and the fair, as the motto goes, is back in town.

Stretched before our community are five days of contests, exhibits, rides and regalia. Children racing to the farm animals, then slowly petting them with care. The auctions drawing cheers from the crowd with each sale completed. And the Destruction Derby to cap off the fair, the roar of engines punching the air.

Workers wave like old friends as they guide your car through the parking lot. Then it’s off to the front gate, tickets in hand, before bursting into a self-contained, temporary world — Nevada County’s Brigadoon.

Everyone makes their way to Treat Street at some point. Weary parents wait as their children can’t make a choice. Maybe the fried chicken, or the corn dogs, or the cotton candy clinging to your face, eyes bigger than the stomach, but worth it.

Organizers have been building toward this point for months. This will be a fair to remember, but we must ensure it’s for the right reasons.

The COVID-19 pandemic didn’t disappear with the advent of vaccines. For one, not everyone has been vaccinated. Another problem is that the Delta variant is proving effective at infecting those who have gotten the shot.

The vaccine is not a cure all. It’s more akin to a seat belt. You can get into a wreck either way, but you’d much prefer to have that seat belt on if you do. Chances are, everyone who wears one will have fewer and less severe injuries.

And they’ll be more likely to walk away.

So if fair staff says it’s wise to wear a mask while at the fair, wear a mask. There will be hand washing stations throughout the fair. Take advantage of them. This isn’t about politics. It’s just good hygiene.

In late June, our county was seeing under 10 new cases a day. That started to climb a few weeks later. On Thursday, we had 78 new cases.

The strange times we’re living through haven’t ended yet, and wishing them away, or ignoring them, won’t help. We are fortunate to have a fair of this quality in our community. Let’s work toward making it one of the best.

And that means we need everyone’s help.

We can halt the spread of the coronavirus through our actions. If you don’t feel safe, or you’re worried about the virus, stay home. Otherwise, take the right precautions, mask up when appropriate, keep your hands clean and stay a good distance from others.

You know, all the things we’ve been doing for over a year.

We can be careful and have fun at the same time. We can support our fair and keep the COVID-19 numbers down.

It just requires diligence, commitment and the will to keep others safe.

And, if you’re already in line, maybe one of those corn dogs as well.

The weekly Our View editorial represents the consensus opinion of The Union Editorial Board, a group of editors and writers from The Union, as well as informed community members. Contact the board at EditBoard@TheUnion.com

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