Tuesday, September 17, 2013

TOP STORY >> Lonoke County Fair opens today

Leader managing editor

Enthusiasm runs high in Lonoke County, where the 73rd annual county fair gets underway in earnest today as the carnival opens at the fairgrounds in Lonoke.

Fair Queen Erica Brewer and Junior Queen Emily Brewer, two sisters, were selected Saturday along with their bevy of royalty.

The carnival gets into full swing at noon today and continues until 11 p.m. each night through Saturday. Armbands offer unlimited rides, except for bumper cars.

“On behalf of our board of directors and our volunteers, I welcome you to your 73rd Lonoke County Fair. With a lot of hard work, cooperative and continuing effort, this fair will be the best in a long history of great fairs,” said James Smith, Lonoke County Fair and Livestock Association Board president, in a message in the fair’s tabloid. “Come enjoy the tradition, competition, good eats and the fun at your 2013 Lonoke County Fair.”

He pointed out that the county’s young people spend months preparing for the event and learning that hard work makes the best better.

The big crowd-drawing events — bull riding, rodeo, the queen’s grand entry and bullnanza are Friday and Saturday nights.

Bullnanza from Rockin’ P Rodeo and the National Federation of Professional Bull Riders of America adds $2,000 to the pot each night.

The Rodeo Queen Horsemanship Competition will be held at 6 p.m. tonight in the arena, and the Queen will make her grand entry at 7:30 p.m. Friday and again at 7 p.m. Saturday.

The fair parade will be held at 5 p.m. Thursday, followed by redneck games at 7:30 p.m.

Other popular and favorite events are the beef cattle show at 8 a.m. Friday and a livestock awards presentation at 3 p.m. Saturday.

The horse and mule pull, a perennial favorite, takes place at 11 a.m Saturday, in between the children’s small animal pet show and the cross cut saw contest. The youth talent show will follow.

The full schedule and detailed map of the fairgrounds can be found in the Lonoke County Fair tabloid in the Sept. 11 issue of The Leader and The Leader Extra. You can also check out the fair’s website at www.lonokecountyfair.com.

On Thursday, admission is free for seniors over 62.

Gate admission is $2 for adults, $1 for children 6 or over and free for those who are younger.

Fairgrounds are located at 1006 W. Third in Lonoke at Hwy. 89.

Other notable events are happening in the Educational Building today under the supervision of the Lonoke County Extension Homemakers Club. Event judging today in that building opens with cut flowers and herbs. Other categories include floriculture, horticulture and field crop judging.

Dairy-goat judging begins at 8 a.m., followed by the breeding-goat show, junior market lambs and breeding. Lambs, heifers and steers for market will be weighed this afternoon followed by junior and pee wee livestock including beef, cattle, dairy cattle, horses, mules, sheep, swine and goats. Bringing up the rear are market swine and commercial gilts.

A few rules include no dogs except during the pet show from 10 a.m. to noon. Dogs are not allowed in the livestock barn at any time. Alcoholic beverages are not allowed and will not be tolerated. There is no smoking allowed in barns or buildings.