There are 7,800 people and a single stoplight in Woodstock, but this time of year 200,000 people descend on the Woodstock Fair, which has been going strong for 159 years.
It’s billed as one of the biggest fairs in Connecticut, drawing people from Massachusetts and Rhode Island as well.
“It’s a powerful factor having folks come in here and it puts Woodstock on the map,” said Mike Alberts, (R) Woodstock’s first selectman.
As hundreds of thousands walked up and down the aisles, grabbing a bite to eat, there was also the hope that they would spend some of their dough in town.
“We do have people coming from quite a distance and we’re hoping that while they’re here they may stay at a bed and breakfast or one of our inns or they may have a couple meals, so there’s a trickle-down effect,” Alberts said.
Though the town didn’t put a price tag on it, the economic impact is impossible to miss.
“You can look around at the fair and see all of the local businesses that are running left and right,” said Woodstock resident Ty Collige.
Vendor Cheryl Normandie says she’s the longest running vendor selling her own products. She’s been selling her paintings at the fair for 53 years.
“This show has always meant a lot to me. I live right down in Brooklyn, but coming here is like coming home,” Normandie said.
She pointed out that the weather can make or break those who depend on fairs to make a living. This year, the forecast is picture perfect.
“It does hurt. If you have weather like this we’re in good shape,” said Normandie.
The Woodstock Fair runs through Monday. Click here for the fair’s schedule.