Coolidge Hall is the place to be during the Topsfield Fair. This spacious building, located close to the center of the fairgrounds, becomes a showcase during the fair for art, handcrafts, and cooking entries from some of the finest cooks in Massachusetts as they enter the various baking contests the fair offers.
An open display kitchen is constantly in use, whether for judging the baking contests or demonstrating and cooking shows. The smell of freshly baked bread wafts out of the ovens and fills the entire hall with a homespun aroma. During the fair, visitors line up to purchase the warm loaves of oatmeal, raisin, and honey-wheat bread.
The kitchen opens up into the vast hall area where hand sewn quilts hang from the ceiling and tables of handcrafts are displayed. Along one wall, the art show exhibits the work of professional and non-professional artists, adults and children alike. To the rear, the bin room displays the work of artists that is available for purchase. Demonstrations by different artists and craftspeople are located at the center of the hall.
The 40-foot stage is a focal point that bustles with music and entertainment. The annual Mrs. Essex County Pageant is held there on the second Sunday of the fair.
Mrs. Essex County 2014
Julianna Marie Bucknilli, Age 7, of Newbury
Christopher Burns Jr., Age 5, of Beverly