Our Proud History
It all began on two crisp fall days in 1884 on a site which is now Victoria Park in downtown Regina.Regina’s first fair was held on October 2 and 3, 1884 under the guidance of the volunteer-based Assiniboia Agricultural Society. Townspeople, homesteaders and agricultural entrepreneurs came from miles around to exhibit their livestock, seeds, vegetables, handcrafts and manufactured goods.The first Territorial Exhibition was held in 1895, and it garnered enough interest and support to be worthy of some generous financial contributions.
The Dominion Government contributed $25,000. The Territorial Government and the Town Council each contributed $10,000. The generosity of these governments enabled the Society to purchase 50 acres of land at $20 per acre for a permanent exhibition site. The area West of Elphinstone Street between Dewdney Avenue and the railway tracks was the parcel of land which was chosen. This constitutes our present location. Additional acquisitions were to follow in later years and the railway tracks was the parcel of land which was chosen. This constitutes our present location. Additional acquisitions were to follow in later years.
The 1895 Territorial Exhibition was promoted as “An Agricultural Extravaganza”. It was a grand affair with livestock competitions, bands, Red River jig competitions, horse races, the NWMP Musical Ride, bronco busting, trapshooting, soccer, tennis tournaments and an auction.
The 1899 fair was known as “The Weed Fair” because its theme was based on the control of noxious weeds.
On April 3, 1907, the newly created Province of Saskatchewan enacted legislation incorporating the Regina Agricultural and Industrial Exhibition Association Limited, as a non-profit volunteer based organization which is the forefather of the Regina Exhibition Association Limited, or IPSCO Place as we know it today.
In 1914 World War I broke out and the exhibition site was expropriated by the Canadian Government to house troops and serve as a training base.
In 1966, the City of Regina established a Centennial Committee whose responsibility was to develop new programs and projects for ’s Centennial in 1967. The Centennial Committee decided upon a gala city-wide summer celebration that was to end with the Summer Fair. In honor of Saskatchewan ’s pioneers, the celebration was to be called Buffalo Days.