HOI Fair postpones July dates, leaves door open for rescheduling – Peoria Journal Star

HOI Fair postpones July dates, leaves door open for rescheduling – Peoria Journal Star

PEORIA — The Heart of Illinois Fair at Exposition Gardens has been postponed because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The board of directors is holding out hope the fair can be rescheduled for a later date in 2020, if the state moves past the Phase 4 limitations on allowable crowd sizes in a timely manner.

“We were holding out hope that we might still be able to open the gates for some summer family fun,” reads a short statement on the fair’s website. “Unfortunately, it would be unwise and impractical to open trying to meet the Governor’s current Restore Illinois guidelines. “

A move from Phase 3 to Phase 4 in the Restore Illinois guidelines is expected later this month. Even so, the increased number of people allowed in a single gathering at the less-restrictive level — from 10 people in Phase 3 to 50 people in Phase 4 — would not allow the fair to open for its July 14-18 run.

“Even if the state goes to Phase 4 at the end of June, we would be limited on the number of attendees and would face daunting challenges to meet all safety guidelines,” according to the statement. “At this time, we are forced to postpone until a new date can be set later in the year.”

Fair president Erica Abenroth was not immediately available for comment.

Scott Hilyard can be reached at 686-3244 or by email at
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