The official start of the 2016 N.C. State Fair is still 148 days away, but this weekend you can catch a fair vibe at the Got to Be NC Festival. Last year Casey Cardinal made his debut, check out what he’s looking forward to at this year’s festival.
The Got to Be NC Festival opens Friday and runs through Sunday. Gate admission and parking is free.
1. Casey’s Big Ticket weekend: Check out the ticket booth near the waterfall to purchase $5 tickets to the N.C. State Fair. This is the absolute lowest price they are available for adult admission. Early birds will want to catch this deal before it flies away. Only 2,500 tickets are available at this discounted price. Ticket booth hours are Friday, noon to 8 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The N.C. State Fair runs Oct. 13-23.
2. The HomeGrown Fare
Come to the Exposition Center and visit dozens of booths featuring North Carolina food companies, breweries and wineries sampling and selling products grown, raised, caught and made in North Carolina. Come indoors and spend the afternoon sampling and talking with companies that represent some of the best products in our state. A list of vendors is online. Hours are Friday, noon to 8 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission is $3 and children under 12 are free. The HomeGrown Fare is sponsored by Lowes Foods.
3. Carolina Pig Jig (Saturday only)
The festival is the place to come hungry, after sampling your way through the Exposition Center, head on over to the Carolina Pig Jig. More than 40 Masonic Lodge chapters will be competing for best barbecue. Food will be served to the public after judging at 11 a.m. Saturday morning. Ticket prices are $15 for adults, $5 for ages 7 to 11 and free for ages 6 and under. The Pig Jig benefits the Masonic Homes for Children at Oxford.
4. Tractor Parade
Be on the lookout daily at 1 p.m. for the hundreds of tractors making their way through the fairgrounds in the tractor parade. One of the best parts of the festival is seeing tractors of different colors, makes, models and years roll by. This promises to be the kids’ (young and old) favorite part of the day.
5. Family fun!
The festival also has carnival rides, fireworks, free entertainment, music and more. It’s also a great time to check out the popular Hogway Speedway, located in the tractor area of the midway near the Martin Building. These are the same pigs that pack in the crowds during the State Fair. Take the kids by AgriPlaza between the Graham Building and Expo Center to see more animals and poultry up close. Check out the website for a complete list of attractions.
It’s going to be a little spring dose of the big show coming in October.
See you this weekend!