A New Spin To The Fair: Fresh Changes To The Entertainment Format
Wednesday, July 25, 2012 • 12:39am
AUGUSTA, NJ – There are new things in store this year for visitors to the Sussex County Fairgrounds for The New Jersey State Fair/Sussex County Farm and Horse Show, which runs from Friday, August 3 through Sunday, August 12.
“There’s a lot of new entertainment under the performing arts tent,” said Tammie Horsfield, President of the Sussex County Chamber of Commerce, who also volunteers on the fair’s Executive Committee, and now acts as the coordinator of the Performing Arts portion of the fair.
“When Priscilla Stafford passed away in February it left a huge void,” said Horsfield.
Stafford had overseen the Performing Arts Tent entertainment at the fair for 30 years.
One of the new additions this year is a wellness portion to the fair each morning. There are special wellness programs from kickboxing to a drum circle, from pilates to yoga and Zumba. There will be sessions for the vendors, and the public.
“We’re trying to let the public know how important wellness is, and while you’ll be eating fair food in the evening, you’ll be working it off,” said Horsfield.
There are special “days” at the fair as well: Children’s Day, Senior Day, Peter’s Valley Day, and even a Green Day, where there is a focus on sustainability, and hands-on projects and demonstrations.
With Peter’s Valley Day, Horsfield said, there will also be hands-on activities.
“There’s going to be an opportunity for demonstrations, projects, and for the public to be involved in things such as weaving, and painting,” said Horsfield. “There will be blacksmiths demonstrations and ceramics. We have fun interactive activities in the tent this year.”
The Fair Food Contest is something new this year. Also, fair-goers will have the chance to partake in a wine tasting, to sample, and learn about the wines of the area.
The entertainment lineup has also changed.
The Sussex County’s Got Talent Contest will take place at the fair, rather than at the municipal level.
Entrants have submitted their acts by DVD and YouTube.
“The cream-of-the-crop is selected to perform and compete,” Horsfield said, and winners will receive cash prizes.
Other special entertainment highlights will take place on August 8 with a Battle of the Bands. There are also some classic favorites such as the Palisades Park Fire Department Band, and the Franklin Band.
In terms of the major entertainment, on Sunday, August 5, Kent Smith, who had been a trumpet player for the Rolling Stones and who lives regionally, Horsfield said, will also be at the fair. Additionally, former American Idol contestants will perform.
“We have a diverse mix of entertainment through the 10 days of the fair,” said Horsfield.
The Queen of the Fair Pageant will also take place, on Saturday, August 4.
“We’re going back to our roots, and having it in the main horse show ring,” said Horsfield.
Horsfield said there will be a short show of contestant interviews shown the evening of the pageant as well.
Though there are new changes this year, Horsfield said some of the old favorite fair traditions will continue, such as the Polka Dance Competition, and Square Dancing
“It’s important for people to know there are changes this year,” Horsfield concluded. “Some people say, ‘Oh, I’ve been there and done that.’ We hope they’ll come back.”
Click here for the New Jersey State Fair/Sussex County Farm and Horse Show Website.