Just when fairgoers thought the Fulton County Fair couldn’t get any bigger or better– last year’s attendance was a whopping 262,072– the 2010 edition of this Fulton County institution promises to be the biggest and best of them all!
From Friday, Sept. 3, through Thursday, Sept. 9, the 153rd Fulton County Fair will feature big names in country, rock, and Christian contemporary music, as well as two new activities sure to go over big with kids of all ages.
There are spacious new picnic grounds at the west end of the fairgrounds, and the midway, expanded just last year, will offer up a big variety of rides, games, vendors, and fair food.
As if that all weren’t big enough, the Fulton County Fair makes its big debut on Facebook this year.
On Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 6, county music star Blake Shelton will entertain the grandstand crowd with such favorites as “Home,” “Some Beach,” “She Wouldn’t Be Gone,” and “Playboys of the Southwestern World.”
In June, Shelton and fellow country star Trace Adkins won the CMT Best Collaborative Video of the Year Award for their performance of Shelton’s hit, “Hillbilly Bone.”
As well known for his personal life as his music– it was big news this spring when he and fellow country star Miranda Lambert became engaged– the Oklahoma native’s first three albums went gold.
He has enjoyed six No. 1 hits and been nominated for four ACM awards.
Kansas, which bills itself as “America’s greatest and most progressive rock band,” takes the grandstand stage, Sunday, Sept. 5.
The group, which boasts the mega-hits, “Carry On Wayward Son,” and “Dust in the Wind,” released its first album in 1974.
In 2009, Kansas had the No. 5 DVD on the Billboard chart for “There’s No Place Like Home.”
John Waller, a Christian contemporary artist who sang “While I’m Waiting” on the movie soundtrack of “Fireproof,” will be in concert Sunday, Sept. 5, at 5 p.m., in the Gospel Tent. The concert is free with gate admission.
The Van-Dells, a perennial fairgoer favorite, will have baby boomers boogying down Memory Lane on Saturday, Sept. 4, at 7:30 pm when they bring their Golden Oldies’ show to the South Stage in a free concert.
Big On Kids And
New activities include a family-friendly firefighter training show that selects kids from the audience to act as “firefighter heroes,” while learning important real-life information about fire safety.
And, for the first time, the fair will feature a catch-andrelease fishing pond where anglers young and old alike can try their luck.
Children of all ages will enjoy visits to the animal barns to see farm animals of every shape and size, up close and personal.
Little ones will particularly enjoy the baby animal barn.
New this year, fairgoers will get an opportunity to see farm animals in action.
Located on the north end of the fairgrounds, in the field by the horse barns, there will be demonstrations of draft horses plowing the field as they did in days past.
On Junior Fair Day, Tuesday, Sept. 8, schoolchildren of all ages will be admitted to the fair free and enjoy special ride prices from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Throughout Fair Week, children ages 15 and under will be admitted free when accompanied by an adult.
No Fulton County Fair would be complete without contests of strength, speed, and skill– and the bigger and noisier, the better.
On Friday, Sept. 3, at 6:30 pm, National Tractor Pullers Association-sanctioned tractor and truck pulls rumble into the grandstand infield for an evening of loud-andproud competition.
Last year’s pulls earned a record 11th “NTPA Regional National Tractor Pull of the Year” award, which is voted on by the pullers themselves.
Trotters and pacers take to the grandstand track at 1 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 4, for the first of three exciting days of harness racing.
Additional contests begin at noon on Monday, Sept. 6, with evening races Tuesday, Sept. 7, at 6:30 p.m.
At 7:30 p.m., on Saturday, Sept. 4, competitors in the Rough Truck Challenge will pit their driving skill and super-charged trucks against an obstacle course designed to put the biggest, baddest driver and truck to the test.
And the bigger-than-big Dodge Raminator will be on hand to give members of the Rough Truck crowd the biggest ride of their lives.
The biggest competitors at this year’s Fair– speaking literally– will be the hulking harvesters that make their way into the grandstand infield at 7:30 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 8, for the headerto header competition of Clashing Combines.
On Thursday, Sept. 9, the 153rd Fulton County Fair will be brought to a bang-up conclusion by two big automobile demolition derbies at 6 and 8:30 p.m.
Big On Agriculture
The Fulton County Fair has celebrated the area’s agricultural heritage since its founding in 1858, and the 2010 fair will be no exception.
Competitors young and old will take part in agricultural and livestock competitions throughout Fair Week.
There will be plenty of agricultural displays, too, including “Tillage through Time,” a big walk-through exhibit that traces the history of farmers’ efforts to prepare the soil for planting, from ancient times to the present day.
Big On Tradition
A time-honored tradition on Saturday of Fair Week is the Veterans’ Free Ham and Bean Dinner hosted at noon by the Fulton County United Veterans Association. On Sunday, beginning at 1 p.m., the Golden Wedding Party, now in its 51st year at the fair, will celebrate all Fulton County couples married 50 years or more, and name one of them King and Queen.
Traditional horseshoe pitching competitions will run Friday through Wednesday, and the Annual Straw Loading Contest is slated for Tuesday at 3 p.m. in Spangler Arena.
Also at 3 p.m. Tuesday for kids 6 and under is the traditional Money Scramble in the Sale Arena.
Throughout Fair Week, fairgoers will be treated to free performances by talented singers, musicians, and dancers at the South Stage and Gospel Tent.
The midway will offer up exciting rides and a dizzying array of games for those wanting to test their skill or luck.
Local businesses, organi- zations, and politicians will be on hand, too, touting the virtues of their wares or causes.
And fairgoers will have seven big days to reacquaint their taste buds with the vast array of once-a-year culinary delights known collectively as “Fair Food.”
One-day gate admission remains just $5 for an adult, with children 15 and under admitted free when accompanied by an adult. Parking is free, too.
Fairgoers who plan to attend multiple days can save money by purchasing season tickets in advance for $15 from 4-H and service clubs, at the fair office, or at area businesses.
Season tickets at the gate, available the first two days of Fair Week only, are $20.
In addition to offering free admission to schoolchildren on Junior Fair Day, the Fair Board also admits veterans and their spouses free on Saturday, Sept. 4, till 6 p.m. and to senior citizens ages 65 and better, on Wednesday, Sept. 8, till 6 p.m.
Free admission does not include ticketed shows.
The Fulton County Fair runs from Friday, Sept. 3, through Thursday, Sept. 9, at the “Top of Ohio” Fairgrounds, just north of Wauseon on State Route 108.