129th Clare County Fair starts July 30th

Cotton Candy, Hot dogs, Elephant Ears and French fries with vinegar make up some of the “tastes” of the county fair, while the sounds of youngsters on a thrilling ride or laughing their way through a fun house maze are a big part of traditional summer ‘fun at the fair’ in northern Michigan.

The annual Clare County Fair, one of the oldest in the state, begins Monday, July 30.

This year’s fair will offer a little of everything for the whole family, from harness racing, midway rides, 4-H livestock shows and agricultural exhibits, to grandstand shows and much, much more!

For the 129th year, the Clare County Fair will bring visitors from all over mid-Michigan to Harrison for a week loaded with exhibits, fun and entertainment. The annual County Fair, one of the oldest in the state, begins this year on July 30th and runs through August 4th.

The 2012 Clare County Fair has been dedicated to Steve Stocking, “a long-time supporter, volunteer, board member and past president of the Clare County Agricultural Society.

The CCAS said, “Steve spent countless months, weeks and hours volunteering his time and expertise to many community organizations and projects. He served on the CCAS Board for 18 years, both as a member and president…Steve loved fair week and could be found at the fair relentlessly performing tasks throughout the day and evening hours.”

Stocking died in May after a year-long fight with cancer. “Steve’s presence along with his warm and friendly smile will truly be a missed attraction,” wrote the Clare County Fairboard.

This year’s fair will offer a little of everything for the whole family, from harness racing, midway rides, 4-H livestock shows and agricultural exhibits, to grandstand shows and much, much more!

The Clare County Fair Board said they are pleased to announce that the Skerbeck Brothers Shows will be once again provide the midway for the week-long event.

In addition to a midway full of rides and games, many grandstand events are planned and in addition, “Circus Pages will have two free shows with all the splendor and glamour of international circus stars, exotic animals and heart pounding daredevil action!

Daily Grandstand events this year will include the Thurston’s Gospel Sing at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, July 29th; Jake Owen with Florida Georgia Line and Amanda Karl at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, July 30th; the USA Figure 8 Demolition Derby at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday July 31st; a Draft Horse Pull by Michigan Horsepulling Association, Inc. at 7 p.m. on Wednesday August 1st; SJO Production’s Motocross at 7 p.m. Thursday, August 2; the Concerned Racers Mud Bog at 7 p.m. on Friday, August 3rd; and on Saturday at 7 p.m. the Super Kicker Rodeo – with Bulls, Barrels, and Extreme Bull Fighting.

Tickets to see Jake Owen are available at the Clare County Fair office, Meijer, or from starticketsplus.com.

This year’s fair will feature the traditional competitions for the best of the best, with dog obedience, small animals, sheep, swine, youth beef showmanship, saddle horse competition, giant draft horses in classes and the traditional award given to “Homemaker of the Year.”

Tuesday and Thursday, July 31 and August 2, will be the traditional “Kid’s Days” at the Fair this year. A Bicycle Drawing, sponsored by Witbeck’s will be held a 5 p.m. on Tuesday, and another Bicycle Drawing sponsored by Stephenson Wyman is scheduled at 5 p.m. on Thursday.

The annual 4-H Small Animal Auction will be held Thursday at noon and the Youth (or Large Animal) Livestock Auction is scheduled Thursday at 5 p.m.

Each day at the Fair brings something special. Monday is Witbeck’s Day, Wednesday is Spartan Day, Friday is Kleen Gene’s Laundromat Day and Saturday is Farm Youth Day. Ride specials are available Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Bingo will be held every afternoon and evening in the Lions Building from 2 to 10 p.m. and the Congregational Church Restaurant will be open Monday through Saturday in the Lion’s Building.

Harness Racing is scheduled to begin at noon on Wednesday.

For tickets, or more information visit the website at www.clarecountyfair.org or call the fair offices 989-539-9011.

“It’s going to be a very good year,” Gunden said.