Funhouse

On the blog I go by Fun House (AKA Heather Overton). At the Fair you'll find me checking out the blue ribbon winners or hanging out in Heritage Circle. It would be hard for me to pick a favorite part of the Fair, but I can tell you one thing I hate - leaving it on the last day. I can't wait for opening day!

Mythical creatures spotted

First it started with our new foods – unicorn bacon and unicorn apples. Then, we saw a few unicorns in our horticultural entries. Next, the midway was full of the colorful and mythical creatures. Finally, even our fairgoers were catching on to the trend. This was all the proof we needed – the 2018 N.C. State Fair is a magical place!  

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Gardens are a family tradition for Natasha Teasley

Walking through the Flower and Garden Show at this year’s fair, you’ll see a garden proudly displaying three ribbons. Natasha Teasley of Durham won the blue ribbon in the “Fall Beauty” garden category, the Arthur K. Pitzer award for best blue ribbon garden entry and the Commissioner’s Choice Award, given by Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. Her garden features fall colors, such as plants with oranges, reds and yellows. It was judged based on creativity, quality of construction, plant materials, color harmony, textural contrast, landscape design, graphics and labeling. Teasley has been helping with gardens in the N.C. State Fair flower…

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Beth Woody celebrates 50 years in the Village of Yesteryear

Since 1969, Beth Woody of Hillsborough has spent her time at the N.C. State Fair as part of the Village of Yesteryear. Mary Cornwell, the first superintendent of the Village of Yesteryear, invited her to participate in the Village and demonstrate how to make Christmas decorations. Since then, Woody has been involved in making and demonstrating many crafts, such as sculptured paper lamp shades, cold water lye soap and kaleidoscopes. Her first love is marquetry, which she was introduced 40 years ago. “I first saw marquetry from Thayer Frances, another crafter in the Village of Yesteryear. We talked about marquetry…

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Woman completes bucket list item with cooking competition win

Mary Boury returned to the N.C. State Fair to mark something off her bucket list – competing in the Special Cooking Contests .  It paid off on opening day with a first-place win for the N.C. Peanut Growers Association recipe contest and a third-place win in House-Autry Mills Cornbread Challenge. Boury is originally from Girard, Pa. She moved here years ago because her daughter lives here and she became a regular at entering cooking competitions at the fair. “Mary moved back to Pennsylvania a few years ago,” said Lisa Prince, special cooking contest superintendent. “We haven’t seen her in the…

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Cool Runnings wins Best New Food at annual State Fair media day

Stephen and Andrea Millington have been serving up jerk chicken, tacos and pork wraps for 18 years at the N.C. State Fair. This year, the couple took top honors for best new food at the annual N.C. State Fair media day, their new jerk pork wrap with mango sauce. Most of the year, Stephen and Andrea Millington work day jobs. Stephen is an  IT technician in Durham and Andrea is an accountant in Raleigh. During the fair, they take their vacation to run Cool Runnings Jamaican food at the N.C. State Fair. Andrea is from Jamaica and many of the…

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Friday Frenzy, Dizzy Passes and other tips for parents of teens headed to the Fair

Getting old enough to walk around the fair without your parents is a rite of passage for many youth.  Here’s a few tips to help nervous parents navigate sending their teen out on their own. Have a meeting place. Suggestions for a good meeting place are the waterfall area, the Martin Building on the Midway or the Tobacco Pavilion. Don’t rely just on cell phones. With the rides and number of people, the fair can be a noisy place. Don’t count on your teen hearing their cell phone. Also, on busy days, cell service can be a little spotty. Purchase…

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Casey’s Clubhouse, Fire Safety Show and other ways to enjoy the Fair with young children

Coming to the Fair with young ones in tow? A little advanced planning can help you make the most of your day.  Here are some tips and not-to-be-missed activities for the elementary-aged and younger at the fair. Buy your tickets before the fair starts. Tickets can be purchased at Food Lion, online, the N.C. Museum of History, State Farmers Market and at Gate 9 at the Fairgrounds. It’s no fun to stand in line and purchasing in advance means designated fast-track admission at the entrance gate. Kids under six years old get into the fair free. However, with an Kiddieland…

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Fairgrounds improvements put rabbit show on hiatus

There are some changes to the fairgrounds in an area that generally featured one of the tightest pedestrian walkways at the fair. Fairgoers coming in from Gate 8 and walking up past the Village of Yesteryear would typically face a congested area where the rabbit barn, MarketPlace and N.C. State Howling Cow ice cream booth are located. This spring the rabbit barn building was torn down to open the space up in this area. “The number of exhibitors in our rabbit show has declined over the years,” said Kent Yelverton, fair manager. “The facility that was used to house the…

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Archetype Brewing wins State Fair beer competition

Cheers to this! Archetype Brewing has won Best in Show in the N.C. State Fair Beer Competition with their Belgian Strong Ale. The brewery bested 32 other gold medal-winning beers to secure the N.C. Brewers Cup trophy. With North Carolina being the home to more than 260 breweries and brewpubs, the 2018 NC Brewers Cup featured the stiffest competition yet in the event’s seven-year history, with 76 North Carolina breweries competing for medals over two days of judging. Twenty certified beer judges from across the Southeast traveled to the competition to select the finest examples of each beer style from…

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60 tons of shavings: The N.C. State Fair by the numbers

The annual N.C. State Fair is less than 2 weeks away. The fairgrounds crew is busily preparing the grounds for the nearly 1 million fairgoers that will visit during the annual 11-day event. Check out these fun numerical facts about the 151st N.C. State Fair, which runs Oct. 11 through the 21st. 2,855: Number of windows on the exterior of Dorton Arena 1,674: Number of mums ordered for the Flower and Garden Show. Several of these will be used to build the giant mum-tree, one of the fair’s most popular photo spots. 60 tons: And what do you get? All…

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