People attend New Holland Farmers Fair despite rain

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NEW HOLLAND, Pa. -- The 85th annual New Holland Farmers Fair is off to a rainy start in Lancaster County.

Although it was raining off on Wednesday night, that didn't stop thousands of people from attending.

The fair kicks off every year with a parade. Fair officials said usually the parade brings in about 30,000 people. But this year only half that many showed up because of the rain.

Many bands that were supposed to be in the ceremony cancelled.

Barry Hoffard, the parade director, said, "The phone has been ringing off the hook at home and only because of rain. And you know you have a band with a lot of dollars vested in instruments and uniforms. I would've done the same thing."

Hoffard has been the parade director for 11 years.

"My first year of doing this. Never had rain before on my watch. So this is a new deal for me," he said.

Some people who attended the fair were disheartened by the weather.

Lisa Snader, from New Holland, said, "I'm a little disappointed that it's rainy... Me and my mom were just talking about how it doesn't feel very crowded at the fair."

Others were concerned about the vendors.

Neal Rice, from West Lampeter Township, said, "I do feel bad for some of the vendors, especially the churches and civic organizations because they're not getting the money that they probably typically do."

But fairgoers made the most of it.

Rice said, "We love coming out to the fair. We come every year. The weather it's you know pluses and minuses. It's not as crowded so that's great. We're still having a lot of fun throwing on our rain jackets."

The fair goes on until Saturday.