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County fairgrounds and County Agricultural Societies

color of law

Accomplished Advocate
Oct 7, 2007
Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
It is well known that Open Carry in Ohio is a constitutional protected right. However, a number of Agricultural Societies, who run county fairgrounds and county fairs, claim that they are private and, therefor, believe they can disallow open carry and conceal carry at county fairs. But this is not the case. The Ohio Revised Code, Chapter 1711 provides for the establishment, organization, and functioning of county agricultural societies. R.C. 1711.13 explicitly provides that “[c]ounty agricultural societies are hereby declared bodies corporate and politic.”

Over the years Agricultural Societies have been successfully challenged, forcing them to remove signs at entrances that threated gun owners of possible arrest for exercising their rights. All accomplished without going to court which the law allows for under Ohio Revised Code section 9.68.

A month ago a friend and I informed the Logan County Agricultural Society and the County Commissioners that the illegal signs had to be removed. No responses were received other than they are private. Because the fair was to start July 11, last week the two of us sent emails to the county prosecutor and sheriff demanding the signs be removed. We followed up by separately calling the sheriff. We were both informed the signs were coming down per the order of the county prosecutor. The signs were gone at the start of the fair.

If anyone knows of any Ohio county fairgrounds having signs posted at the entrances disallowing firearms please let me know so we can get them removed.