County fair general manager vacates post

Randy Fox, who has served as the general manager of the Prince William County Fair for the past seven years, has resigned to take a similar position with the Montgomery County Fair in Gaithersburg, Md.

He will serve as executive director of that fair, which coincidentally will run the same nine days as Prince Williams event Aug. 8-18. Foxs last day in Prince William is Monday and he will be starting the next day in Montgomery County.

“Ill miss working the county fair and the many people associated with it, but going to Montgomery will give me the opportunity to step into a larger operation,” said Fox.

The Montgomery Fair drew 230,000 spectators last year, nearly three times more than the Prince William County Fair.

Keith Johnson, who grew up around the fair and has been the grounds manager for many years, was named interim general manager by the Prince William Veterans Farm Club, operators of the Fair.

“It will be a challenge taking over for Randy but Im looking forward to it,” said Johnson on his first day in the position Tuesday. He foresees no major changes in next years fair.

Fox said he will go to Las Vegas the first week in December where he will review entertainment acts for both fairs.

Fox said he was grateful for the opportunity to have worked the county fair for seven years.

“I worked with a great group of people and Ill miss them. We were like a family, particularly during the nine days of the fair. Ill also miss the many families that came out to the fair for a day of fun,” he said.

A resident of Springfield, Fox said his commute to work will be about 12 miles farther each day. He was employed with the Journal Newspapers before joining the county fair.

Both fairs started about the same time with the Montgomery Fair celebrating its 55th year and the Prince William fair in its 54th year.

Fox was selected from 32 applicants for the Montgomery Fair position.

“My ability to step into the new position was largely because of the freedom the county fair officials gave me the past seven years to make improvements to the fair. I compliment them for that,” he said.

The Prince William County Fair is the largest county fair in the state.

Fox took over for Joe Johnson who had managed the fair for more than 40 years. Johnson is one of five survivors who originally started up the county fair after returning to Manassas following World War II.

Staff writer Bennie Scarton Jr. can be reached at (703) 368-3101, Ext. 125.

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