The short list of potential new homes for the Montgomery County Fair has become much shorter as a couple of communities recently dropped out of the hunt to acquire the fairgrounds.
Montgomery County Agricultural Society President John Yancik said the fair board still is looking at several sites — possibly including land in the Trotwood area — but refused to elaborate further.
“It’s not Hara Arena,” he said. “We’re not interested in that site, but there are some other sites in the Trotwood area and throughout the county.”
Yancik said the board hopes to make a decision in the next several months, ideally by May 1.
Montgomery County Fair Executive Director Greg Wallace said there are two sites under consideration right now, but provided no specifics beyond that.
“I’m not prepared to talk about any of the sites, because I’ve not had an opportunity to talk to the board since the Huber Heights thing fell through,” he said.
Huber Heights announced Friday that the Montgomery County Fair Board is no longer considering moving the fairgrounds to property inside of its city limits.
Huber Heights said the project to relocate the fairgrounds and annual fair from its long-time home on South Main Street in Dayton has “specific limits” on land acquisition costs.
The limits evidently were intended to ensure the agricultural society has funding to construct new fairgrounds facilities and buildings to their specifications, officials said.
“We wanted some things, they wanted other things, and we just couldn’t make it work out,” Yancik said.
The fair will receive the proceeds from the sale of the South Main Street property to the University of Dayton and Premier Health. The agreed upon sales price is $15 million, though some money will come from a state grant and the county to help restore the historic roundhouse.
UD and Premier are under contract to buy the property, but have not closed on it.
Yancik the fair board will select a new home based on factors that include the property’s size, cost, location and how much cooperation they receive from the impacted jurisdiction.
Yancik said the property will require the right kind of zoning, and the relocation must happen in a timely fashion. The fair needs to move by Oct. 1.
The announcement that Huber Heights is out of the picture came about two months after fair officials revealed they were no longer pursuing a few sites in Brookville.
Leaders in Trotwood, however, hope their city is still in the mix to be the fair’s new permanent home.
Mayor Mary McDonald said fair representatives looked at three or four possible locations in the city, and city staff would work closely with the fair to find the best and most suitable site and help the fair get up and running by 2018.
The fairgrounds would be a welcome addition in Trotwood that would create economic development opportunities, such as providing a venue to host major events, McDonald said.
“To have an event location like that relocate to the city of Trotwood would be a win-win for both of us,” she said. “There are not a lot of opportunities in the northern corridor of the county for large-scale events.”
The fair board is seeking a site of at least 100 acres. The current county fairgrounds site is about 38 acres.