2006 N.C. State Fair Offers New Features
The 2006 N.C. State Fair in Raleigh opens today (Friday) and runs through Sunday, Oct. 22.
Things are shaping up for plenty of fun-filled family activities, livestock competitions and displays, and the ever-popular buffet of food choices.
The fair will bring back many crowd favorites, such as the racing pigs, tractor pulls, the State Fair Ark livestock display, arts and crafts, competitions, bike stunt shows, free grounds entertainment, educational exhibits and concerts by nationally recognized performers in Dorton Arena.
Fairgoers this year will find several new exhibitors in Pitzer Heritage Circle, a free entertainment opportunity where visitors can make their own music video, a new guest services building on the Midway and a special day dedicated to recognizing military personnel.
Heritage Circle, near Gate 8, will host a crew of wooden boat builders who will showcase production methods used in crafting a seaworthy vessel in the tradition of North Carolina's coastal heritage. The crew will work throughout the Fair to complete the boat.
In addition, a storyteller will share tall tales, legends and myths while cooking traditional Southern fare the old-fashioned way over a fire pit.
On opening day, Heritage Circle will take center stage with opening ceremony activities and a celebration of Tobacco Heritage Day. Former and current tobacco growers are encouraged to join Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler in stringing and loading tobacco into the refurbished barn to be flue-cured during the Fair.
On the waterfall stage near Dorton Arena Oct. 17 through 22, fairgoers will be able to star in their own entertaining music video. With Dance Heads, visitors stand in front of a screen and lip-synch to music. Images are then superimposed with fairgoers' faces and a video is produced, making for a fun fair memory.
The fair will also recognize the contributions and sacrifices of military servicemen and women on Wednesday, Oct. 18, with Military Day.
Active-duty military personnel and four family members will be admitted for free with military identification. This includes Reserve and National Guard members. Special exhibits and activities are planned for the grandstand, including equipment displays and performances by military bands and a silent drill team.
As part of a five-year building and grounds improvement plan, the State Fair has added a new 9,496 square-foot facility on the Midway that provides additional restrooms as well as law-enforcement and Red Cross services. This multi-purpose building can be rented throughout the year for special events. The new guest services building is located near Gate 9.
Fair visitors can enjoy plenty of free grounds entertainment while at the fairgrounds. Performances of traditional North Carolina song and dance will be showcased daily at the Folk Festival tent located behind the Kerr Scott Building.
Musical entertainment can be found on the Waterfall Stage near Dorton Arena. Kiddieland will feature Magic 4U, Nick's Kids Show and Al the Artist. Doggies of the Wild West and the Dazzling Mills Family will entertain with their variety acts.
If you're looking for high-energy entertainment, the Keith King Bike Stunt Show, the N.C. State Fair Southern Showdown Tractor Pull and the Demolition Derby will crank up the amps. And don't forget to look up for stiltwalker Brad Bodary, and watch out for the roving mobile robots.
This year's lineup of Dorton Arena concerts offers fans of country, contemporary Christ-ian and R&B an opportunity to see some established acts and rising stars. There is a separate charge for all Dorton concerts. Seats are reserved.
Featured performers include:
-- Friday, Oct. 13 - Chris Tomlin ($5)
-- Saturday, Oct. 14 - Jo Dee Messina ($10)
-- Sunday, Oct. 15 - Blake Shelton ($10)
-- Monday, Oct. 16 - Eric Church ($5)
-- Tuesday, Oct. 17 - Earl Scruggs, Mike Cross and Tift Merritt ($15)
-- Wednesday, Oct. 18 - Little Big Town ($5)
-- Thursday, Oct. 19 - Chris Brown and Paula DeAnda ($15)
-- Friday, Oct. 20 - Casting Crowns ($10)
-- Saturday, Oct. 21 - Chris Cagle ($10)
-- Sunday, Oct. 22 - Gary Allan ($10)
Tickets to the concerts will be available at the Dorton Arena Ticket Booth during the Fair unless a concert is sold out.
For more information, go to www.ncstatefair.org.
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