GREENFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Board of Directors has voted to cancel the Franklin County Fair this year.

President of the Franklin County Agricultural Society Michael Nelson told 22News the fair was canceled as a result of warnings of another wave of COVID-19 from many public health professionals. The COVID-19 pandemic has greatly affected the Greenfield community and the financial side of the county fair.

According to the City of Greenfield’s website, there are 193 confirmed COVID-19 cases. 193 recoveries and 46 deaths since June 2.

The pandemic caused the economy to plummet and even residents are struggling to pay for essentials. Nelson said local small businesses who annually donate to the fair are taking out loans just to stay in business. “We cannot ethically ask them for support and contribute to their financial strain,” Nelson added.

Despite the fair being canceled this year, visitors can still partake in activities available to families on the fairgrounds. Nelson mentioned the fair can possibly be in the works of creating a virtual visiting program, however, plans are still on hold until more information is given from Governor Baker on re-opening.

For 172 years, the fairgrounds have represented pride in Franklin County where everyone comes together. “Taking this unprecedented step today will allow us to preserve this history and come together again at the annual Franklin County Fair in September 2021,” Nelson said.