The Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival will return to being an annual event under an agreement approved Tuesday by the board of supervisors.
A new partnership between the county and Pickering Events LLC puts that company in charge of operating the Riverside County fairgrounds and fair for five years starting July 1, according to statement on the county’s website.
The next fair and date festival is scheduled to be held Feb. 17-26, 2023.
County officials hope the partnership will lead to reinvestment in the Indio fairgrounds and attract more events to the venue.
“This is great for the City of Indio, the Coachella Valley and Riverside County and for the future of the National Date Festival,” said Supervisor V. Manuel Perez in the statement. “Riverside County and the fair board look forward to being partners with Pickering in bringing the Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival back for the community.”
Pickering Events is a family-owned business that specializes in fairs and fairground management.
“The Riverside County Fairgrounds is interwoven in the lives of so many Californians,” said Chris Pickering, principal partner with Pickering Events and a resident of Moreno Valley, in the statement. “Local Coachella Valley residents and the broader community of Riverside County have both expressed a desire to open the facility to milestone life events – weddings, quinceañeras, and the like – as well as restore the traditions of the National Date Festival.”
The fair and date festival was not held in 2021 and 2022 because of COVID-19.