Favorite

Fair play 

For 10 days, beginning Friday, lovers of dusty revelry, livestock, meats on sticks and rides that, if not dangerous, are dangerous looking will gather at the Arkansas State Fair. Organizers expect somewhere around 440,000 souls once it's all said and done. Which is more than 15 percent of the population of Arkansas. There's nowhere in the state where you'll find such a mass confrontation with humanity. Ain't it grand?

As expected, there are new wrinkles: Rides inspired by natural disaster like the Typhoon and Funnel Force. Foods inspired by drunken experimentation like meatballs on a stick and deep-fried hot dogs. Shows inspired by God knows what like the Jungle Island High Dive show, where “high dive specialists” dive off an 80-foot ladder dressed like giraffes, monkeys and zebras. “Special” shows inspired by like destruction, like “Night of Destruction” (7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 11), a demolition derby and a monster truck exhibi-tion, where fans will be able to catch rides in the “Kajun Cadillac” monster truck (only $8 to $12 per).

Of course, for all of our love of new things on sticks and bizarre sideshows, the fair is mostly about nostalgia. And thankfully, the hallmarks remain. The Zipper, that death trap of a Ferris wheel with free-flipping cars, is still around for us to marvel at. You can still buy not just a corn dog, but a “super” corn dog. Livestock continue to represent in a major way. This year, some 10,000 animals will be on display, including a white Bengal tiger, pigs racing for an Oreo cookie and, in the exotic petting zoo, a kangaroo and a zebra.

More need-to-knows: Concerts, as always, are free with fair admission. On Friday, Oct. 11, country singer Rodney Atkins kicks things off at 7:30 p.m. The following night, Saturday, Oct. 12, American Idol favorite, Bo Bice, offers up his brand of Southern rock at 8 p.m. There's more country on Sunday, Oct. 12, with James Otto at 7:30 pm. At 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 15, rowdy country act LoCash Cowboys per-forms. For all the boomers, classic rockers Three Dog Night play hits like “Mama Told Me (Not to Come)” and “Joy to the World” at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 17. All take place on the fair's main stage.

As one of the last stops in the pro-rodeo circuit, the state fair rodeo should offer an extra bit of grit as riders try to hang on long enough to qualify for the national finals.
Shows run 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Oct. 16 through Oct. 18, with one matinee performance at 1:30 p.m. Saturday.

As always, there are a jillion different ticket promotions running throughout the fair. Take special note of Fifty-Cent Friday, where patrons can purchase a 50-cent token for gate admission at Harvest Foods good for opening day Friday. Also, back again from last year, fairgoers can purchase, for $17, an advance ride card at any Harvest Foods, Affiliated Foods or Budget Saver that's redeemable for a one-day unlimited-ride armband.

For those who don't want to fight the traffic, there will be a round-trip shuttle bus on Saturdays and Sundays from War Memorial Stadium. Tickets are $2; children under six ride for free.

For further lowdown on promotions and a schedule of events, visit www.arkansasstatefair.com.
Favorite

From the ArkTimes store

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Most Shared

  • So much for a school settlement in Pulaski County

    The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette's Cynthia Howell got the scoop on what appears to be coming upheaval in the Pulaski County School District along with the likely end of any chance of a speedy resolution of school desegregation issues in Pulaski County.
  • Riverfest calls it quits

    The board of directors of Riverfest, Arkansas's largest and longest running music festival, announced today that the festival will no longer be held. Riverfest celebrated its 40th anniversary in June. A press release blamed competition from other festivals and the rising cost of performers fees for the decision.
  • Football for UA Little Rock

    Andrew Rogerson, the new chancellor at UA Little Rock, has decided to study the cost of starting a major college football team on campus (plus a marching band). Technically, it would be a revival of football, dropped more than 60 years ago when the school was a junior college.
  • Turn to baseball

    When the world threatens to get you down, there is always baseball — an absorbing refuge, an alternate reality entirely unto itself.

Latest in Top Stories

  • Good for the soul

    The return of Say McIntosh, restaurateur
    • Jun 1, 2010
  • Robocalls are illegal

    Robocalls -- recorded messages sent to thousands of phone numbers -- are a fact of life in political campaigns. The public doesn't like them much, judging by the gripes about them, but campaign managers and politicians still believe in their utility.
    • May 31, 2010
  • Riverfest winds down

    With Cedric Burnside and Lightnin' Malcolm, Steve Miller Band, Robert Cray, Ludacris and more performing.
    • May 30, 2010
  • More »

Event Calendar

« »

July

S M T W T F S
  1
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31  
 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation