As the 70th annual - and possibly last - Prince William County Fair begins today, the owners of the fairgrounds are still seeking a buyer.
After decades of entertaining the community, the Prince William Veterans Farm Club has been trying to sell the roughly 85-acre property in Manassas since last September, said Victor Smith, a member of the Farm Club’s board of directors.
“We continue to have negotiations and conversations with multiple parties,” Smith said. “Nothing has been signed. Nothing has gotten to the point where we’re finalizing any documents. We’re still a long way out.”
Most of the site — which is in 11 parcels — is zoned commercial, although some is zoned agricultural, Smith said.
Although this is expected to be the last fair, the fairgrounds will continue to host other events, such as a Spanish rodeo, and will continue to offer parking for recreational vehicles and boats, Smith said.
“We’re booking events into 2020 for various things,” he said.
“When we started on this venture, my advice to the board was this is not something that happens overnight,” Smith added. “It could be three to four years. I’m comfortable about where we are in the process, but it is a journey.”
In September 2018, the group’s board authorized Weber Rector Commercial Real Estate Services in Manassas to put the property on the market, Smith said. The Farm Club was founded by World War II veterans who grew up on farms.
While the fair has offered entertainment to the county for decades, Smith said he knows everyone has their own memories.
“The people who’ve gone there over the years, like myself, everyone has their memories,” he added. “I suspect those memories are good ones locked away in photos and in memory banks.”