Fair At The Square Set to Be Best Yet

The Fair at The Square has been held twice before, but according it its organizers, this year’s edition will be nothing like the previous ones.

The third annual Fair at The Square is set to be bigger and better and will be held on the afternoon of Saturday, May 14 in Westchester Square, between Westchester and St. Raymond avenues.

It will feature over 15 live music performances, carnival rides, games, food and stands set-up by local businesses. The fair is being organized by the Westchester Square Merchants Association, the Bronx Council of the Arts, the Bronx Business Alliance and about 20 corporate sponsors.

“It’s going to be unlike anything the Northeast Bronx has even seen before, except for maybe the St. Theresa Feast,” said Joe Regina, program coordinator of the Westchester Square Merchants Association.

Regina said the timing was right to expand the fair, because of the strides the Westchester Square area has made over the past few years.

“For the first two years that we attempted to do this, we really didn’t want to do anything on a grand scale,” Regina said. “We weren’t at the point where we wanted to invite a lot of people to Westchester Square because we didn’t have a lot to offer them.”

Previous fairs drew a few hundred, maybe a thousand visitors, and minimal participation by local retailers. This year, however, the organizers feel there is an opportunityto showcase the area to multiple thousands of visitors.

“We want to show everybody the diversity we have in commerce, culture and community,” Regina said. “It’s coming together to celebrate the rebuilding of a great area.”

The diversity is perhaps best reflected in the roster of musicians who will be performing. Just Nuts are scheduled to perform for the oldies and classic rock fans, Streets of the Bronx Band will handle doo-wop and over eight rappers are expected.

The merchants association also expects to hear back from the Department of City Planning about its proposal for a business improvement district around the same time as the fair. It’s all part of the master plan to bring Westchester Square back to the glory of years past.

Westchester Square was the first European settlement in the Bronx. It was first settled in 1654 by English settlers from Connecticut. By the mid-1900s it was a commercial and transportation hub for the Bronx, but like many other parts of the borough it suffered in the latter half of the century.

Regina, however, does not believe its best days are in the past, and wants to use the Fair at the Square to show it.

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