Newberry: new home of the Alachua County Fairgrounds

ALACHUA COUNTY, Fla., (WCJB) -- The Alachua County Commission made a decision tonight about the new location for the fairgrounds. In a unanimous vote, the fairgrounds and agricultural extension office is going to the city of Newberry, and an event center is proposed to go on the Cabbot Kopper site in Gainesville.

"Agriculture is everything to our community," said Newberry city commissioner Joy Glanzer, "that's just who we are."

The Alachua County Fairgrounds has found it's new home.

"We have a superior location because we are rural, and youth fairs are rural in nature," Glanzer continued.

Commissioner Glanzer said the Alachua county commission made the right choice.

"We wanted the ag events, and now we have a lot of work to do, and we will...we are behind it and it was a great outcome," Glanzer said in an interview after the decision.

The event center will be built in the City of Gainesville, but agricultural events have deep roots in Newberry.

"It's a natural fit in Newberry, our roots are agricultural in nature and our future is agricultural. Newberry's comprehensive plan actually identifies agricultural programs as part of our economic development for the future," Glanzer said.

The Canterbury equestrian site in Newberry still has to be purchased and renovated. Although there is no firm time frame yet, Alachua County Commissioner Byerly said progress will be coming soon.

Five municipalities pitched their proposals to county commissioners earlier today. They included the city of Hawthorne, Newberry, Gainesville, East Gainesville, and representatives of the Cabot Kopper superfund site.