The Banana Derby is returning to the Orange County Fair after management says the event had a great reception last year. The controversial event consists of strapping live monkeys onto rescue dogs and having them race around the track.
Fair organizers say the event will be an entertaining and educational experience. Families will learn about the capuchin monkey in between the fast-paced races. Spectators can pick their favorite dog and monkey jockey combo, let them hear your support, and watch as the 2022 Banana Derby champion is crowned.
The family behind the Banana Derby has rescued animals for decades and trained them to participate in this family-friendly show.
“The Banana Derby is one of the most popular shows at the fair,” says Manager Ron Weber. “It’s extremely unique,there’s no other show like it. We are always looking to provide our community with an opportunity for educational fun.” Once the races end, families have the opportunity to get up close and personal with Gilligan, the capuchin monkey, and have a photo taken.
People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) calls these sort of events “absurd and dangerous for dogs and monkeys.” They claim the monkeys are being traumatized as the audiences cheer on.
The Banana Derby shows will be held every Thursday through Sunday from July 14 through July 31, 2022. Admission is free with a fair admission ticket.