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York County's festivals and carnivals return after missing last summer

Matt Enright
York Dispatch

One of the casualties of the COVID-19 pandemic was the abundance of summer festivals and carnivals in York County.

From the Mason Dixon Fair to the Dallastown Carnival, summer festivals and carnivals are back, and people are excited to support the community again.

"It's exciting. I don't know how many phone calls we've gotten just asking if the carnival will be back," Dallastown zoning and code officer David Garabedian said in an interview Monday.

The Dallastown Carnival, happening Aug. 17-21, will feature rides, live music and vendors. 

While Dallastown held a food truck night last year to attempt to raise money for the community, officials say it's an entirely different vibe with the summer carnival returning. 

"It's a place where they can meet people, make some money and network as well," Garabedian said about the carnival.

For the Parliament Arts Organization, the YorkFest art festival from Aug. 26 to 29 is critical to revenues and the ability to assist and promote artists. Taking place along the Codorus Creek in downtown York City, the event will feature a variety of art vendors, international food vendors and world music.

Parliament's former executive director, Collin Holder, said Monday that not holding the event in 2020 was detrimental to Parliament's revenues. It's a very expensive event to produce, including adding murals throughout downtown that cost approximately $50,000. The 2021 festival will help to make up revenue and give exposure to local artists who will be showcased.

"I think it's going to be exciting times for our arts in our community," he said. "All of this is paid for by the revenues we generate from this event."

Had the Mason Dixon Fair at the fairgrounds in Delta, 6899 Delta Road, been held last year, this year would have been its 25th anniversary. Instead, the event from July 12-17 will be the program's 24th.

Mason Dixon Fair president Jeff Griffith was excited to see participants come back to the event, which includes rides, judging of agriculture and livestock, and a youth program that teaches children about crafts and skills such as baking, needlework and canning.

"It's something that the community looks forward to, that kids look forward to, to share their animals," he said. "It's a big thing." 

Shrewsbury Fireman's Carnival co-chairperson Matthew Mitzel is also excited to see the carnival return in 2021. That carnival, running June 28-July 3, features live music and will close out with a fireworks display on its final day.

Eureka Volunteer Firemen's Stewartstown Carnival co-chairman Ira Walker Jr. said several organizations rely on the carnival for revenue. That carnival runs July 19-24. 

Here's a list of some of York County's summer festivals: 


York County BBQ Festival and Street Fair: June 18-19, Peach Bottom Township Recreation Center, 5 Pendryus Ave., Delta and Delta Peach Bottom Elementary School, 1081 Atomic Road,

Fawn Grove Olde Tyme Days: June 25-27, 110 N. Market St., Fawn Grove,

Shrewsbury Fireman's Carnival: June 28-July 3, 21 W. Forest Ave., Shrewsbury,


New Freedom Lions Club Carnival: July 6-10, 1 Playground Alley, New Freedom,

Jefferson Carnival, July 12-17, 4707 Sportsman Club Road,

Mason Dixon Fair: July 12-17, 6988 Delta Road, Delta,

Eureka Volunteer Firemen's Stewartstown Carnival,: July 19-24, 16 College Ave., Stewartstown,

Pleasant Hill Volunteer Fire Co.: July 26-31, 2941 Baltimore Pike, Hanover,

York State Fair: July 23rd-Aug. 1, York Expo Center, 334 Carlisle Ave.,

Smoke in the Grove BBQ Festival: July 31, Spring Grove Community Park, 50 N. East St. No. 1, Spring Grove,

Moon Dancer Winery's 16th Annual Reggae Festival, July 31-Aug. 1, 1282 Klines Run Road, Wrightsville,


Peach Days at Glen Rock:  Aug. 5-7, 1282 Klines Run Road, Wrightsville,

Red Lion Street Fair: Aug. 10, East Broadway and Main Street, Red Lion,

Dallastown Carnival: Aug. 17-21, Dallastown Community Park,

Wellsville Annual Carnival: Aug. 19-21, Wellsville Fire Co., 95 Community St.,

YorkFest: Aug. 26-29, Downtown York,