Barn of the Month


2016 SJC Fair poster

2016 San Juan County Fair poster art by Jill Bliss

August is San Juan County Fair time, and serendipitously the theme this year (August 17-20) is Barn & Raised in the Islands.  As in the past 7 years the 100 Friends of Old Island Barns will have a display in the San Juan County Agriculture Exhibit on Historic Barns of the San Juan Islands, with a focus on raising them: how these awe-inspiring examples of architectural engineering were constructed.  How did they raise those huge post and beams, let alone provide level foundations of rocks and hewn timbers?

In addition, of course, there will be many other exhibits with barns as their theme, so all of us Friends of Old Island Barns will feel right at home.  Hence it seems quite appropriate to feature as the August Barn of the Month the San Juan County Fair Horse Barn, which you can visit in the midst of its busiest time of year–the Fair!


View from SW 1

San Juan County Fair Horse Barn south entrance

San Juan County Fair Horse Barn.  The Horse Barn was constructed in 1924 as part of the San Juan County Fairgrounds just south of the Friday Harbor town limits.  It consists of two parts: an older, 30′ wide, 110′ long, 17’8″ high section to the north and a newer, 36′ wide by 82′ long, 18′ high section to the south.  Both sections have frame walls on top of concrete stem walls with wood truss roof systems.  Stalls line both side of a central aisle on the inside, and there are additional stalls in sheds added to the east side of the building.  The building is located in the northeast corner of the fairgrounds, where there was a practice arena and other horse stalls in separate buildings.

Detail Foundation Difference

Detail of Juncture between the Two Sections

So come on by and check it out, being careful of course to respect the busy horse-and-rider traffic.  See you at the Fair!