The Exhibition: Empty
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The Exhibition: Empty

Torontoist’s photographers are exploring the Canadian National Exhibition. Today, in the last edition of The Exhibition, Ryan Walker looks at what the fairgrounds look like before the crowds arrive, and—starting here in the gallery above—what’s left after the crowds go away.

Bookending the two-and-a-half weeks that the Canadian National Exhibition fills are several days of chaos on the exhibition grounds. Leading up to the fair, hundreds of colourful structures seem to spring out of nowhere, and prizes—sure to be some child’s pride and joy—are unpacked and put on display in the hopes of enticing one of the million or so fairgoers to try their luck. The assembly of the fairgrounds (done in part by the South African workers we profiled in August) is organized, good spirited, and productive. That only makes for a more marked contrast with the Ex’s disassembly. There’s no sense of excitement, no fanfare: it’s a messy, strictly business sort of affair, one that unceremoniously reinforces just how temporary the CNE is.
Photos by Ryan Walker/Torontoist.

CORRECTION: SEPTEMBER 10, 2010 The photo gallery above is not just of the Ex after the crowd leaves for the season, as this article originally suggested—before this shot, it’s of the Ex before the crowds arrive as well.