Grandstand, midway events offer plenty of excitement

July 18, 2019

Gizmo the Robot and friends.

By Pat Maurer

This year’s Clare County Fair, set for July 22nd through the 27th, will be bringing some family fun with a variety of grandstand events including concerts by LANCO, The Oakridge Boys and more.

The excitement begins even earlier with a free concert at 7:30 p.m. Sunday evening the 21st by the Cavalrymen Quartet with a free-will offering instead of admission fee.

Monday evening’s event will be the Super Kicker Full Rodeo at 7 p.m.
Super Kicker Rodeo Productions Kicker is keeping our western heritage alive with a full rodeo as part of this year’s tour. Events to be featured include bull riding, saddle bronc riding, bareback riding, girls’ barrel racing, team roping, tie-down roping and mutton busting. Paris, Michigan is home to Super Kicker Rodeo Productions, a fourth generation rodeo company committed to providing quality family entertainment which celebrates our country’s western traditions.

Tuesday it’s the USA Demolition Derby-Figure Eight Races at 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday is tentatively Harness Racing at 6 p.m., LANCO’s concert starts Thursday at 7 p.m., The Oak Ridge Boys perform on stage at 7 p.mFriday evening and Saturday the grandstand will host the Concerned Racers Mud Bog at 7 p.m. to wind up this year’s week-long fair.

The Oak Ridge Boys, who were featured at the fair in 1993, will be returning to Clare County for a July 26th performance. Add to that the July 25th concert by LANCO, and you have music for all ages.

The Oak Ridge Boys are an American country and gospel quartet. Performing for more than 50 years, they were popular for southern gospel until the mid-1970s when they changed their image and concentrated on country music.

The Country-Rock band LANCO, which stands for Lancaster & Company, was formed in 2013. The quintet performs feel-good country anthems tinged with classic rock and blues edges. Their song Greatest Love Story was the theme for the Netflix series The Ranch, and was one of Billboard’s Hot Country Songs Top Ten. They were named “New Group of the Year” by ACM Awards.

Tickets for the Oak Ridge Boys and LANCO are available at

There are more great events at the Clare County Fair during the last full week of July. The midway will be by the Skerbeck Family.

The Skerbeck Family has a long history in the amusement industry starting in the 1850s with a family owned traveling circus. Nearly 170 years later, the Skerbecks provide exceptional carnival midways. They feature over two dozen rides, professional and certified food concessions, friendly and fun game concessions and a friendly American staff and management.

On this great midway fairgoers will find free performances daily by Brunon Blaszak’s Bengal Tigers, Nerveless Nocks-Globe of Death, and Gizmo the Robot, who will be on hand wandering through the midway every day.
Brunon’s Bengal Tigers and Nerveless Nocks Globe of Death are new to the fair this year. Gizmo has been featured at the fair for several years.

Gizmo is a real “charmer in armor” who is fun for the whole family. He’s 100% mobile so you may bump into him anywhere on the midway.  His wise-cracking show is a non- stop standup comedy act on wheels. One thing’s for sure, the fast-talking robot is never at a loss for things to say.  He can even answer questions from visitors. Gizmo jokes, sings, shakes hands, dances, hugs, and flashes his lights. He also has a high-powered digital sound system so you can hear him coming. You’ll be able to get up close to this act so be sure to bring your cameras- this robot is a ham.

Fairboard President Lama Gunden said, “Gizmo the Robot wanders around the fairgrounds several times a day, talking to people and making them laugh. Gizmo is family friendly and a big hit at the fair. He travels around and tells joke and interacts with everyone he meets. How does he do it?” Lamar says “Gizmo won’t tell us how he works.”

The fair’s new entertainment this year, Nerveless Nocks Globe of Death, is a thrill a minute event held twice a day during the week and three times on Saturday, said Gunden.

The Nerveless Nocks Productions Inc. created in 1840 as Switzerland’s original Circus, pioneers in the Thrill and Stunt industry, producing Extreme Circus and Thrill Spectaculars around the world. The Nerveless Nocks first appeared in the USA in 1954 as the headliner of The Greatest Show on Earth with their original Sway Pole extravaganza. Today the Nerveless Nocks Produce Extreme Thrill Shows, FMX and Monster Truck Shows, Cirque Equinox “the magic circus” (combining the finest theatrical circus acts and the world’s greatest magic and illusion stage spectaculars), Pirates of The Sky, Vortex of Doom, Extreme Water Ski and Stunt Spectaculars, and the Globe of Death which will be featured at this year’s fair.

Brunon Blaszak’s Bengal Tigers, another show new to this year’s fair, will also be on tap twice a day and three times on Saturday. Brunon Blaszak is a third generation tiger trainer, and has been performing with Sumatran, Siberian and Bengal Tigers his entire life. He and his mother, Ada Smieya-Blaszak are fully devoted to preserving these magnificent tigers for many generations to come.

Another must-see at this year’s fair will be a beautiful display of new, old and unique quilts on display in the Lion’s building where you can see a unique collection all from local quilters.

There will also be a Veteran’s Building, Merchant’s Buildings, Home Arts and Livestock Barns to visit.

On top of all that, there will be 4H animals and projects, and award winners on display, competitions, 4H animal auctions and, of course, the full week of grandstand events and shows.

For grandstand event tickets or information about this year’s fair, call the Clare County Fair Office at 989-539-9011 or see their website at

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