Fair favorites join fresh fun July 14-21
The 2012 Franklin County Fair opens Saturday, July 14, at the Franklin County Fairgrounds, 4100 Columbia St. in Hilliard.
The eight-day fair runs through Saturday, July 21, and offers a variety of opportunities for family fun with a mix of historical favorites and new activities.
The theme is "Celebrating 95 Years of Fun."
Returning this year are perennial and popular attractions such as tractor pulls, truck pulls and the fair finale, the demolition derby.
Franklin County Idol, a vocal talent show modeled after American Idol, returns for the fifth season, and a fashion show also is planned.
Members of 4-H clubs will showcase multiple exhibits, culminating in the 4-H Junior Fair livestock auction July 21.
New events this year include the Fair Chance Dog Show, which will provide fairgoers an opportunity to meet rescue and shelter dogs available for adoption, and a family-oriented game show, It Just Takes a Minute to Win It.
"The Franklin County Fair is a wonderful family event for people of all ages. There is simply something for everyone," said Allison Rushley, a senior board member of the Franklin County Fair Board.
The fair features grandstand entertainment each evening and daily entertainment in the afternoons.
Daily entertainment includes the Fantazia Circus, Nojoe's Clown Circus, Dr. Insecta's Bug Lab Experience and a petting zoo.
Entertainment July 14 includes Runway on the Midway fashion show, presented by kidslinked.com, at 3 p.m. and motocross at the grandstand at 7:30 p.m.
At 7 p.m., the Junior Fair royalty contest will be held at the entertainment tent and the 2012 Franklin County Fair king and queen will be named.
Sunday, July 15, will be Family Day at the fair. Children can meet Eddie and Rocky of PBJ Connections, a Pataskala-based organization that provides equine-assisted behavioral and mental-health therapy.
At 6 p.m., the Fair Chance Dog Show and the finals of Franklin County Fair Idol begin.
At 7:30 p.m., families may register for It Just Takes a Minute to Win It, the evening's grandstand entertainment. Teams of one to four people will compete in a series of challenges to complete a physical activity, Allison said. Teams completing each challenge receive a ticket. All tickets are entered into a random drawing for a prize basket containing gift cards for goods and services.
Monday, July 16, is Cops and Kids Day. Children accompanying a paying adult and wearing an official DARE T-shirt will be admitted free of charge.
Activities include an appearance by therapy animals from PBJ Connections, a full slate of 4-H activities and motocross at the grandstand.
Tuesday, July 17, features W.A.R Wrestling as grandstand entertainment.
Wednesday, July 18, is Senior Day at the fair. Senior citizens presenting a Golden Buckeye Card between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. are admitted free.
Activities include a Senior Fair chili cook-off at 5 p.m. Grandstand entertainment begins at 7 p.m. with a draft horse pull, presented by the Buckeye Horse Pullers Association of Ohio.
Thursday, July 19, features Irish dancing from the Regan Rankin Academy of Irish Dance, and grandstand entertainment is a truck and tractor pull.
Friday, July 20, features a regional qualifying event of the National Tractor Pull Association as grandstand entertainment.
The fair concludes Saturday, July 21, with the Junior Fair livestock auction at 1 p.m. and a demolition derby at 7 p.m. at the grandstand.
The demolition derby traditionally has ended the fair and is its largest draw, Allison said.
Gates are open from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. July 15-19, and from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. July 14, 20 and 21.
Rides open each day at noon and close the same time as the gates.
General admission is $5, except July 14 and 21, when admission is $6. A seven-day pass may be purchased for $20.
All-day ride passes may be purchased for $14. On July 15 only, all-day ride passes are $10.
For information about contest entries and deadlines and to view a detailed daily schedule, visit fcfair.org.
The Franklin County Fairgrounds are accessible from Columbia Street, Northwest Parkway, Avery Road and Main Street.