The 2012 Mountain State Fair promises to live up to its theme of ?Squeal, Thrills and Ferris Wheels? with plenty of fun activities, musical entertainment, rides, crafts, food and agricultural shows planned for the whole family.
The fair runs Sept. 7-16 at the Western N.C. Ag Center in Fletcher.
?Even more entertainment and activities are planned for this year?s fair,? said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. ?You won?t want to miss Western North Carolina?s premier agricultural event.?
The Mountain State Fair celebrates the traditions and heritage of mountain crafters and entertainers, featuring a clogging competition, a daily Mountain Music Festival and handmade items from local crafters.
Two additions to this year?s lineup will bring extreme sports excitement to the fairgrounds. The Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association Rodeo will be held Monday, Sept. 10, through Thursday, Sept. 13, at 6 p.m. in the Stampede Corral. The Haywood Community College Timber Sports Team will demonstrate lumberjack skills at 1:30, 4:30 and 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 7, through Sunday, Sept. 9.
A number of fair favorites return to entertain visitors. Among the popular returning acts are the Kenya Safari Acrobats, the Hogway Speedway Racing Pigs, chainsaw artist Dan Smathers and Dixie Starlight Express, a choreographed precision equestrian team.
Fairgoers who are into music will find plenty to entertain them with three stages dedicated to local and regional talent. The Bojangles Music Stage features a variety of acts performing a variety of musical styles. Among the performers are Nikki Talley, Nuthin Fancy, Leigh Glass Band, Old North State, Kayla McKinney, Buddy K Big Band, Michelle Lee, Sharkadelics, Tom Fish, The Vinyl Brothers Big Band and more. Bands perform throughout the say.
The Heritage Music Stage will feature bluegrass and traditional Appalachian music nightly at 7 p.m. The Pepsi Music Stage features daily performances by musician Leon Jacobs Jr.
The Mountain State Fair has a long history of hosting engaging and educational shows. Magician Brad Matchett brings agriculture to life in his entertaining Agricadabra Presents: The Science of Ag show where kids of all ages will learn about our state?s leading industry.
With the return of the popular Mooternity Ward exhibit, some fairgoers will get to witness the miracle of a live calf birth. A team of agriculture students and veterinarians will be on hand to assist expectant cows with deliveries. Videos explaining the birth also stream throughout the day for fairgoers who are not on hand for a live birth.
Naturalist and educator Carlton Burke?s Wild Encounters show in the Davis Event Center gives fairgoers a chance to see and learn more about wild animals. Show times are 5:30, 6:30 and 7:30 p.m. daily.
Two other returning acts will likely leave fairgoers scratching their heads, wondering, ?How did they do that?? Comedy hypnotist Mike Bishop will get people to forget their names, become an Elvis impersonator and even think the hypnotist has disappeared before their eyes. Shows are at 3,5 and 7 p.m. Fridays through Sundays, and 5 and 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday on the Got to Be NC Stage.
Equally mesmerizing is the extreme illusions and escape shows by Josh Knotts and Lea. This mix of Las Vegas-style grand illusions and daring escapes also includes participation by audience members. Check out the shows at 4, 6 and 8 p.m. Fridays through Sundays and 6 and 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday on the Got to Be NC Stage.
Fairgoers will also want to check out the livestock shows when they visit. See kids and adults and their best farm animals in competition in McGough Arena, the Livestock Arena and at the livestock barns throughout the fair.
Advance tickets are on sale through Sept. 6 at area Ingles stores, the WNC Ag Center, the WNC Farmers Market in Asheville and online at ww.mountainfair.org. Advance tickets are $6 for adults and $2 for kids 6 through 12 and seniors 65 and older. That is a savings of $1 off each ticket. Ride coupons are $6 for a book of 12 tickets, half the price if purchased during the fair. The fair is also offering the Family Fun Pack for $30, which includes five admission tickets, tickets for four rides and discount coupons for fair vendors.
In addition, fairgoers can save money and help feed the hungry by attending Wednesday, Sept. 12, for Ingles Day at the Mountain State Fair. Â Fairgoers get free fair admission with five cans of Laura Lynn brand food from Ingles. Food collected is donated to the Manna Food Bank.
For more information, go to www.mountainfair.org or call 828-687-1414.