From livestock and farm equipment, to entertainment and food, fairs can satisfy the interests of a number of different people.
And when it comes to being able to attract those people, recent numbers from Carnivalwarehouse.com indicate the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo drew in the largest crowd in 2009. In all, 1.89 million people went to the event, which represents a 5 percent rise over last year.
Though many people may suspect that a tough economy may have dropped attendance for some fairs, one of the main factors of those that saw a drop was the weather. For example, state fairs for California, Illinois, and Mississippi had double-digit declines that were primarily attributed to bad weather.
"Were it not for some extremely bad weather spells during key events, we could have had a great year in 2009," Matt Cook, president of carnivalwarehouse.com, said, though he added that 2009 was still a "solid year."
Of course, fairs weren't the only things that were hampered by poor weather. Farmers across the country have been dealing with wet conditions, which have made planting and harvesting difficult for the year.