WESTOVER — The new building housing the photography and art entries at the Harmony Grange Fair received a lot of interest Tuesday evening.
The building, which was formerly the home to the overflow of crafters and vendors who set up to sell their wares during fair week, was expanded and upgraded earlier this year to serve as the permanent location for the department.
The fair received a COVID-19 grant from the Clearfield County Commissioners last year and used those funds to refurbish various areas of the fairgrounds to provide a better experience for fair visitors.
Department Chairwoman Renea Goss and Assistant Melanie Rorabaugh said the expanded space provides a more preferable viewing option for visitors and additional room to grow the amount of entries the department receives.
Previously, entries for the photography and art department were displayed on a wall in the grange hall. Goss said the placement was less than ideal.
“Things would blow down and you had to use a ladder to climb up and down and hang things or reposition them. I also felt bad for the kids because sometimes their artwork was so far up the wall, they couldn’t see it.”
Goss said when she, her husband Terry Goss and Rorabaugh arranged the entries Tuesday evening, they were able to easily group the entries according to the age groups which range from pre-kindergarten to senior citizens and amateurs to professionals.
“We were able to line up the age groups better and in a more organized manner,” Goss said.
Rorabaugh said she hopes the more professional display area will encourage additional entries.
“I hope when people see how nice it looks, they will want to bring their work too. I think some adults believe once they’re no longer kids, that there is no place for their work and that is just not the case. We’d like to see the department expanding. We’ve got lots of room now,” she said.
Plans are to continue to enhance the space to provide better viewing for visitors. Rorabaugh said they hope to develop a rail system to hang the photographs and art work and have it in place for the 2022 fair.
Goss and Rorabaugh said fair visitors are flocking to see the new building and displays.
“We’ve gotten only good comments. When people come through and see this, they’re pretty thrilled,” Goss said.