90th Annual County Fair Begins Sunday
Having spent much time laboring away in the barn, in the garden or over the stove, local residents are making their final preparations in anticipation of the 90th annual Fulton County that will get under way this Sunday.
While visitors to the fair can expect many of the traditions they’ve become accustomed to over the years with good food and fellowship, some of the major changes to the annual fair will be changes in event start times as well as more sizeable purses for winners of the demolition derby.
In touching base with the “News,” Fulton County Fair Board secretary and spokesperson Sheila DeShong reported the fair will begin on Sunday, August 15, with the open horse show. In prior years, the kickoff event started at 9 a.m. but will now get under way at 8:30 a.m. The annual vesper service sponsored by the McConnellsburg Ministerium will again begin at 6:30 p.m. to be followed at 8 p.m. by four young women battling it out on stage with their composure, wits and fair knowledge to claim the title of Fulton County Fair Queen. Sunday admission is free.
Another scheduling change, according to DeShong, will be a 3 p.m. start on Monday, August 16, for the breeding beef show. A conflict currently exists in the fair book, DeShong added, but participants should abide by the 3 p.m. start time.
Looking at the entertainment schedule for that evening, DeShong went on to note that the 7:30 p.m. compact car demolition derby will include an increase in the winner’s purse. A total of $700 is available for the small car event, with top honors receiving $500. The second-place winner will receive $125 and a third-place victory will bring in a purse of $75. Trucks will not be permitted to participate during the evening’s demolition events as previously scheduled.
Family Day is on the list of favorite events for Tuesday’s portion of the fair, with times listed from 2:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Gates will actually open at 2 p.m. that day, and admission is set for $6 (includes rides) for children 12 and under; $6 admission only for individuals over 12 years old or $8 for admission and rides; children ages 2 and under are admitted for free (rides not included). Family Day events include the Little Miss Fair Queen Contest sponsored by Community State Bank of Orbisonia at 5:30 p.m. and the 4x4 Orlo Ink Truck Pull at 7 p.m.
An increase in purse size has also been granted for the full-size car demolition derby set for Wednesday, August 18, beginning at 7:30 p.m. DeShong noted $1,000 will be divided between first place with $700; second place with $200; and $300 for the third-place winner.
Thursday has been proclaimed “Senior Citizen’s Day” at the fair with free admission to seniors ages 65 and older until 5 p.m. Bingo and entertainment, which will include an appearance by the popular “Aughwick Band,” will be held in conjunction with efforts by Tri- State Community Health Center and F&M Trust. While at the fair, spectators can sit a spell and take in the modified and stock model lawn mower racing that will get under way at 5:30 p.m. as hosted by the Fulton County Small Engine Club.
Receiving much fanfare after its debut at the 2009 fair, four-wheeler drag races will return this year on Friday, August 20, also known as “Phantom Fireworks Day.” The drag races are sponsored by Sean’s ATV Connection, RH Bunch Construction, Harryman Brothers True Value, Mamma’s Pizza and Ridersville Cycle. The night’s excitement will conclude at 9:30 p.m. with a fireworks display by Phantom Fireworks.
Saturday will wrap up the fair with a variety of events, including the muchanticipated 4-H/FFA livestock sale at 6 p.m.; the mini-rod tractor pull at 7 p.m. sponsored by the Shenandoah Valley Pullers; and a teen dance at 8 p.m.
Midway entertainment and rides will again be provided by Mid Valley Amusements of Middleburg. Season passes are available at a cost of $25 (no rides) or $40 with rides. Passes are available for purchase through Monday, August 17, until 8 p.m.