What is the future of the Petaluma Fairgrounds?

25 April 2023

The future of the Sonoma-Marin Fairgrounds is on the docket in Petaluma. In late April the city of Petaluma met with the Fair Board in a closed session. This continues a debate about how the grounds are to be managed.

As it has been since the ‘30s, the city owns the land and leases it for $1 per year to the state of California. The governor appoints select local residents to be members of a board of directors, under the auspices of the District Agriculture Associations. This board manages the fair and fairgrounds, including serving as landlords for a dozen or so tenants renting and using the grounds. However, this arrangement is being challenged as the lease is set to expire at the end of the year. Perhaps in response to public outcry, the city may open up the opportunity for a grassroots, locally controlled organization to manage the grounds.

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