Women’s Day at the New York State Fair has changed over the years, but the celebration Wednesday still offered opportunities for personal growth and chances to improve the community.
Art and Home Center Director Sheryl Lavin remembers the event used to be a great opportunity to get women connected with service groups.
Speakers addressed health issues that apply especially to women (such as heart disease and sleep troubles) and provided advice on avoiding discrimination or scams based upon gender.
Karen Schroeder, Assistant Director of the Fair Housing Council of Central New York, spoke at Women’s Day. She says women can be vulnerable to landlords and lenders.
Schroeder says in Syracuse the council has found single mothers being pressured into basement apartments they didn’t want. There are also landlords who had a notion of the type of tenants they’d get – which didn’t include women with children. When a woman loses a spouse or gets divorced, she could make mortgage or lease decisions she hasn’t faced in 20 years, which Schroeder says can be scary.
In addition to educational material like Schroeder’s, Women’s Day featured traditional exhibits, including cooking and art demonstrations, a fashion show, and craft competitions. Huntington Learning Center Owner Candace Edward believes Women’s Day addresses modern economic and civic concerns.
About 160 people attended the Women’s Day luncheon, and many more visited the ‘mini-fair’ in the Chevy Court area.