Medina County resident says fair display is racist

Antiques displayed as part of "Black Memorabilia"
Posted at 2:48 PM, Aug 04, 2017

One particular display in the antiques building at the Medina County Fair is upsetting one particular resident.

Gary Lustig complained to the Fair Board after seeing a display titled, “Black Memorabilia” inside building 21. It contains several figurines from the past, including a couple vintage Aunt Jemimas.

“It’s offensive and racist in my mind,” Lustig said. “If you look at it, it’s just wrong. So it bothers me that in Medina County that we would exhibit something like this that is offensive to people. It’s racist.”

Fair Board President Michael Gall said the board discussed Lustig’s complaint and decided the display should stay.

“It’s part of history. It’s not a real pretty part of history, but nor is the Civil War. But these are considered value antiques, they have a value,” Gall said.

The display is surrounded by hundreds of other collectible items, including vintage soda collections, clothing, even novelty salt and pepper shakers from the past.

Since the black memorabilia display stays, Lustig said he feels as though there should be a sign explaining why it is there and provide context.

Gall said the display has been shown off and on over the last 25 years. This is the first and only time they have had a formal complaint.

In the past, the fair board also took a stand on allowing vendors to sell the Confederate Flag.