County fair promises fun for whole herd

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Funnel cakes and pig races are just two reasons to mark the calendar for the 2013 Arapahoe County Fair, and the Third Annual Battle of the Homebrews may be another, according to fair organizers who are putting the finishing touches on this year’s event.

The fair runs July 24-28 at the Arapahoe County Fairgrounds, just east of E-470 on Quincy Avenue in Aurora.

Returning favorites include the demolition derby, open and junior rodeos, carnival and two nights of fireworks, if local fire bans permit.

New this year is the National Sled Pullers Association truck and tractor sled pulls, a high-energy event pitting man and machine against traction and gravity on July 26 in the tractor pull arena.

Another addition this year is the pig race and the Rocky Mountain Stockdog Association trials.

“Also on the new list this year is the Interactive Stage,” said Stacey Johnson, Arapahoe County spokeswoman. “Here, you’ll find a little bit of everything, like face painting, jugglers, performances by several local dance groups and other animated shows, but the best part is, it’s that one place at the fair where parents can come and find a bit of shade and respite while the kids are still being entertained.”

Johnson added that Interactive Stage activities are included in the price of general admission and are kid-friendly.

Little ones can enjoy even more free fun in the mutton bustin’ contest, stick horse rodeo, bubble gum blowing contest and petting zoo.

Attendees can shop the wares of more than 40 vendors and enjoy live musical entertainment from 13 bands on the main stage.

General admission includes all stage, arena and tent entertainment and is free for all ages July 24-25. Admission goes to $5 for ages 13 and up on July 26-28.

Kids 12 and younger get in free all week.

Parking is $5 per vehicle daily.

Carnival rides, midway games and select activity tickets are sold separately. Buy tokens and pay per ride, or get a daily unlimited carnival ride pass for $25.

Amateur homebrewers will enjoy the Third Annual Battle of the Homebrews, a nationally sanctioned beer, cider, mead and ale competition held pre-fair on July 20.

“Although we live in a more urban area, the county fair really brings us back to our agricultural roots because it is a big part of our history,” said Johnson. “And that’s something we, at the county, want to really showcase.”

The Arapahoe County Fair has been a summertime tradition since 1906.

Quick guide to county fair

The Arapahoe County Fair will be held July 24-28 at the Arapahoe County Fairgrounds and Regional Park, 25690 E. Quincy Ave., Aurora. Phone: 303-795-4955.

For a printable schedule: Go to the fair’s website at www.arapahoecountyfair.com.

Daily entertainment, times will vary.

• Open class exhibits and demonstrations

• 4-H animal, general and home economics exhibits

• Concerts and entertainment on the stage

• Model railroad exhibit — Main Hall

• Petting zoo

Wednesday, July 24

Gate hours: 4 to 9 p.m.

Vendors open: 4 to 8:30 p.m.

Carnival: 4 to 11 p.m.

Thursday, July 25

Gate hours: 4 to 9 p.m.

Vendors open: 4 to 8:30 p.m.

Carnival : 4 to 11 p.m.

Friday, July 26

(If permitted, fireworks around 9:30 p.m.)

Gate hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Vendors open: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Carnival: Noon to midnight

Saturday, July 27

(If permitted, fireworks around 9:30 p.m.)

Gate hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Vendors open: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.  

Carnival: Noon to midnight

Sunday, July 28

Cowboy Church: 8 a.m. — Livestock Show Tent

Gate hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Vendors open: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Carnival: Noon to 10:30 p.m.