The Fayette County Agricultural Society is looking forward to the 2016 Fayette County Fair being held from July 18-23 and has released some additional information about attractions coming to the grounds.
Faith Cottrill, secretary, and Jason Gentry, board member, recently sat down to discuss the various attractions coming to the fair throughout the week. The first of which discussed was the return of Amusements of America bringing an assortment of rides. This year the rides that will adorn the fairgrounds will include Orbiter, Ring of Fire, Vertigo, Cliffhanger, Super Slide, Tilt, Mardi Gras, Rainbow Rock, Bees, Construction Zone, Elephants, Go Gator, Rockin Tug, MGR 1, Hampton Motorcycle, Hampton Quad, Hampton VW Cars and Hampton Waverunner.
“We have 19 rides coming on the grounds,” Cottrill said. “The Giant Wheel is coming back after being gone last year. They said that it had become damaged on its way back from overseas and that it would need a bit of time for repairs. This year though, they confirmed that the wheel is back in working shape and will stop here for the week before going off to the Ohio State Fair.”
The first evening attraction for the week will be the Nation-wide Demolition Derby being held at 7:30 p.m. Prize money will be awarded and classes for full size cars, compact cars and six cylinder cars will be held. For rules and information, call Nation-wide Derby at (740) 819-5655 or (740) 453-0394. Additionally, information can be found on its website at www.nationwidedemoderby.com.
“The first derby we held with Nation-wide earlier this year went pretty well, despite the weather not being so good as we had a lot of rain throughout the day that hurt attendance and participation, but for being the first derby with a new company it went as well as could be expected,” Doug Marine, fair board member, said. “We are going to start the grandstand entertainment off with a demolition derby, which traditionally brings in a good crowd. We have over $2,000 to give away in prize money. Nation-wide has been working hard to get participants for the event and hopefully we will have a good turnout of cars for people to enjoy.”
Gentry spoke about the various McDonald’s Grandstand pulling attractions. This year, he said he is excited to announce that the National Tractor Pullers Association will be holding an event at the fairgrounds on July 19.
“The NTPA is totally new to the Fayette County Fair,” Gentry said. “It is the best of the best in pulling trucks and tractors. They run all of the big pulls. We were looking for a new event to replace one at the level NTPA is doing it at and we will try it out this year. The main point people should know is we need them to attend if we want to keep this pull here. If we don’t get the turnout, that tells us that people aren’t interested and we can always find something new for the next year.”
The classes for the NTPA Truck and Tractor Pull will begin at 7 p.m. and will include light pro stock, super stock diesel, four engine modified tractors and super stock four wheel drive. Gentry said that this is a great deal for the evening as some would charge additional money to watch this kind of event, but if someone pays to get into the fairgrounds then they, as it always has been, will be permitted into the grandstand. One price for a full fair’s worth of attractions is something the fair board has always placed at the top of important issues.
The harness racing tradition is a vital part of the fair each year, with a card of races Wednesday beginning at 5:30 p.m. and Saturday, starting at noon.
“We may have to move that post time up (on Wednesday),” Schwartz said. “Depending on how many heats we have that evening. I look for an increase in the number of races we’re going to have. I would anticipate as many as 15 races Wednesday and 17 or 18 heats on Saturday afternoon. The numbers of 2 and 3-year-olds are way up this year. There will be added divisions and added competitions. The number of heats will be up. Increased numbers lead to increased competition and we could have some track records fall this year if we have good weather conditions. The quality of horses we have slated to come in is fantastic. On Wednesday, we have the Signature Series, which is the best of the older trotters and pacers. These horses are 4 years of age and up. They can be anywhere from 4 to 14. Most of these horses will be between 4 and 8 years old. They can race up until they’re 14.”
Thursday, there will be a Boy Scout Flag Retirement ceremony at 5:30 p.m. and the OMPTA Modified Truck and Tractor Pull will begin at 7 p.m. at the grandstand. The evening pulls will include a light pro stock tractor class, a four wheel drive modified class, a two wheel drive modified class, a hot rod class and a modified two to four engine tractor class. An entry fee of $25 per hook will be charged and a $5 pit pass will be available.
Friday, the pulls will continue with a Stock Truck Pull beginning at 7 p.m. Classes include 7,800 pound 2.5 diesel class, a 6,200 pound gas class, an 8,000 pound light pro stock class, a 6,500 pound pro gas class and an 8,000 pound RWYB class will be held. Again, an entry fee of $25 per hook will be charged and a $5 pit pass will be available. Entries will be made the night of the pull and for more information about any pull, contact Gentry at (740) 572-3661 or Jamie May at (740) 572-1624.
Finally, Saturday will bring a new attraction, Koi Drag Racing, to the McDonald’s Grandstand beginning at 6 p.m. The drag racing will include kids’ classes, ATV/dirt bike classes, modified truck classes, buggy classes, and more. As with any new event, the fair board is encouraging the community to attend and show support for the attraction.
“We want to thank the county engineer and his office for their continued help,” Cottrill said. “The board has made a lot of improvements to the grounds. The breezeway has been updated this year to complete the Mahan/Fine Arts building and completes an impressive look throughout. We have added new barns and are continuing to make improvements all the time. We are hoping for new restrooms and more improvements to come later. All of this is thanks to the continued support of the community and the fair board. The board members volunteer time because they are passionate about the grounds and they don’t necessarily get the recognition they deserve. The board encourages the community to come out for the fair and if you haven’t been out in a few years, come check out the updates we have made.”
The community is also invited to attend the celebration ceremony, which includes an introduction of 4-H seniors and the Fayette County Fair Queen Crowning, at the McDonald’s Grandstand on July 17 and begins at 5:30 p.m.
Daily admission to the fair is $6, or $9 which includes a ride pass, and allows access to the grandstand events and the many exhibits, both animal, as well as vegetable and even artistic booths. Children ages 2 and under are admitted to the fair free of charge, unless they want to ride the rides, then the cost is $7. There is also a weekly pass, which includes admission to the fair for six days (not including rides) for $30 or a mega-pass that grants access to the fair and rides for all six days for $40. The fair is open each day from 7 a.m. until 11 p.m. and rides operate from 1 p.m. until 11 p.m.
Stay with the Record-Herald daily for coverage on the overall winners from the fair, scenes from various events and more.
Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy