August 9, 2020

Letter to the Editor: Is Cancellation of Lyme’s ‘Hamburg Fair’ Perhaps Premature? More Planning, Less Politics, ‘a Dose of Courage’ are Needed

Updated with new comment May 17:

To the Editor:

I can understand cancelling a major commercial event 100 days out.  Vendor contracts, insurance, etc. are complicated expensive things requiring major financial commitments months in advance.  The Hamburg Fair is 100+ days away, is this really the time to cancel an event that is managed by able and fabulous local volunteers?

Who doesn’t believe in safety first?  Some people don’t, we see them in the news taunting politicians demanding zero safety buffer in terms of distance and masks for example.  Obviously that’s the wrong approach in an airborne virus.  We all have been bench testing the tried and true distancing, mask and gloves method when we shop for the basics and mail things at the post office and it works.

There is extremism on the other end of the safety argument too.  I am saddened and frustrated that our local politicians aren’t rising to the challenge of this horrible virus and figuring out proven ways (thank you post office and grocery stores) to try to bring some semblance of our previous lives incrementally back.

At some point as the virus wears down, which it is, it will be more dangerous to drive to the Hamburg Fair than to attend it.  I challenge our local brain trust to work harder at opening up some non-unsafe, easily manageable human interaction services such as recycling, burn permits, and other low hanging fruit services to demonstrate to the populace that there is a light at the end of this virus tunnel.  Better planning, less political thinking and a dose of courage are the tools out of this nightmare.


Andrew Gibson,