Today is the 81st annual Jubilee Day fair in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania — a little place I call my hometown. Jubilee Day is the largest and longest running, one-day street fair in the Eastern United States. (Did you get that? It’s got a lot of stipulations.) Anyway, it started in 1923 as a way to celebrate the town and originally was more about agriculture, being as Mechanicsburg was mostly farm land. Over the years, Jubilee Day took various forms and changed along with the times. Today it’s mostly filled with food vendors, amusement park rides, and and other comercial goods. Gone is the agriculture, the foot races, the annual crowning of the Jubilee Day Queen, but the pride and cultural lore still lives on — the very pride and tradition that keeps more than 60,000 people coming back for just one sweltering, hot Thursday in June every year.
Here are some great historical photographs of the Mechanicsburg tradition: