08/16/09 — Wayne mails regional fair catalogues

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Wayne mails regional fair catalogues

By Catharin Shepard
Published in News on August 16, 2009 2:00 AM

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The 2009 Wayne Regional Agricultural Fair book has been mailed.

The 2009 Wayne County Regional Agricultural Fair is in the works with schedule catalogues mailed out Saturday, and this year promises the return of old favorites and the introduction of a few new attractions.

The first-ever Lego competition will feature the colorful plastic building blocks put together in creative ways to make objects, structures or a scene, with age categories set for children as young as 5 and for teens up to 18 years old.

Another new feature this year is the collections competition, asking children to bring in their collections of rocks, baseball cards or other items to display and be judged for a prize.

Kids will also have the chance to play Coin Quest, a finders-keepers, Easter egg hunt-style search for quarters scattered in a roped-off area.

"In total, we're going to have 2,000 quarters on the ground for kids to pick up," said Milton Ingram, executive director of the fair.

The 2009 Wayne County Fair, which runs Oct. 1-10, will also see the return of many popular activities and performers, including Buffalo Barfield.

"We have had so many people request that we get him back, I think a lot of folks will be real happy to see he has returned," said Ingram.

Other returning entertainment favorites will include the Star Family Circus, Almost Amazing Rex and Dana Ryan and four fireworks shows.

True to its roots, the agricultural fair will offer local farmers the chance to pit their best produce against others in the region. Registration forms for the junior livestock show with categories for beef cows, market hogs and meat goats have already been mailed to county extension agents in Eastern North Carolina, Ingram said.

Bakers and cooks can jump in to the competition in a number of baked goods categories, while equestrian enthusiasts can display their stock in the open pony and mule or open horse show. Have an old, rusty truck? There's even a place for broken-down old Fords and Chevys at this year's ugly pickup truck competition.

Concerns over the H1N1 virus, also known as swine flu, are minimal at this point, but as a precaution people are encouraged to use the hand washing stations installed at the fairgrounds to protect themselves and the hogs on display. The wash stations were installed several years ago due to a previous e-coli bacteria scare at the state fair, Ingram said.

"We're hoping the H1N1 thing won't affect us," he said. "This year I think it'll be even more important to utilize these hand wash stations, particularly children."

Admission prices won't change from last year, something fair organizers agreed on early in the planning process.

"Due to the economy, I talked to the carnival and he and I both agree we need to hold prices at where they were last year," said Ingram.

Admissions prices will be $6 for adults and $3 for children. The fair will again offer $20 pay-and-ride tickets ($15 if prepaid) which will allow attendees to go on the rides "as many times as your stomach will allow," said Ingram. Admissions price is not included in the pay-and-ride ticket price.

Powers Great American Midway will provide 48 rides, several of them new to the fair. The company will also provide rides for the North Carolina State Fair this year.

Organizers are hopeful that turnout for the 2009 fair will match last year's attendance figures. An estimated 100,000 people attended over the course of the 10-day event in 2008, Ingram said.

"Hopefully we'll have a turnout about like we've been having," he said. "We're hoping that the economy won't have a bearing on it, because it's really a bargain, it's something a family can come out here and do and enjoy."

For more information, visit http://www.wayne fair.com.