New military price salutes current and former service members

The N.C. State Fair is saluting members of the military with a new discounted admission price for service members. The past five years or so, the fair has offered free admission to active-duty members of the military and their families on Military Appreciation Day, which is held on Wednesday during the fair. While the gesture was appreciated by service members, we were asked to consider changing the policy for two reasons. One, it’s hard for military families to get to Raleigh on a weekday, and two, the policy omitted retired service members. So we are changing the policy in response…

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Progress Photo: 5 days and counting

Today is a busy day at the fair, as we’re just five short days away from the start of the 2011 N.C. State Fair. Carnival workers are assembling some of the largest carnival rides, vendors are setting up food booths and cleaning off their grills, exhibitors are hanging signs, and moving furniture and superintendents are eagerly accepting jams, jellies, quilts, paintings and more. As if there isn’t enough happening inside the fairground gates, there also are thousands of Wolfack fans outside the gates tailgating before today’s game against Central Michigan. As a reminder, tailgaters can take advantage of the Gate…

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Artist Spotlight: Newsboys

One of contemporary Christian music’s most veteran bands is finally making an appearance at the N.C. State Fair. Newsboys will perform in Dorton Arena on Friday, Oct. 21, with a set list of songs that spans almost 20 years of changing styles and band members. The band originated in Australia in 1985, and made waves in the U.S. in the early ’90s with the album, “Not Ashamed.” I’m not really sure how to describe Newsboys other than fun and upbeat. And with songs like “Shine,” “Breakfast” and “Take me to Your Leader,” it’s hard not to add quirky to the…

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Enjoy free music at this year’s State Fair

The State Fair offers great deals on musical entertainment for the  entire family. The State Fair’s Bluegrass Stage and the Waterfall Stage will play host to a variety of live music acts, all of which are completely free and appropriate for the entire family. The  Bluegrass Stage is located in Heritage Circle and will feature two different acts, both representing some of the best traditional bluegrass music. The Grass Cats are famous for playing music as diverse as traditional fiddle and banjo music, bluegrass classics, acapella gospel numbers and popular hits. A North Carolina born-and-bred act, the Back Porch Bluegrass Band focuses…

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Sky Diver is a whirlwind of fun

At first glance, the Sky Diver looks like a plain Ferris wheel. But when you get up close, you realize there is a lot more to this ride than meets the eye. The Sky Diver is based on a Ferris wheel design, but passengers sit in cages similar to the Zipper. The cages are mounted on an axle that allows the cars to spin like a barrel roll. The best part? There’s a wheel in the cage so you, or your co-pilot, can control how fast you spin. To see this technique in action, check out the video below. (My…

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Artist Spotlight: Dionne Warwick

I remember the first time I heard Dionne Warwick sing. I was 8 years old and my entire family was stuck inside our house to escape the cruel Massachusetts winter raging outside. My mom and I were sitting on the couch as near to the fire as we could be, flipping through the channels on TV. At some point we stopped on The First Wives Club. The comedy is a syndication favorite, and it opens with Warwick doing a cover of the Jack Jones song “Wives and Lovers.” I asked my mom who was singing and she said she didn’t…

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Entertainment all around: Roaming acts at this year’s fair

Part of the excitement of the State Fair is experiencing the unexpected, and this year’s roaming acts promise to add to that excitement. To make your fair experience as amazing as possible, and keep you and your family entertained as you walk around the fairgrounds, we’re bringing back some old favorites and one special new act to our roaming-acts lineup this year. In case you missed our previous post, the new act this year is DiVine. A living vine dance act, DiVine has been featured at Walt Disney World and the White House among other places and will be roaming…

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Show your “Love A Fair” and become the next Deep Fried Ambassador?

Do you have a passion for the N.C. State Fair that rivals all your friends? Are you the go-to person in your neighborhood or office for any and all fair-related information? Do you dream about racing pigs circling the latest deep-fried creation? If you answered yes to any of these questions, have we got a job for you. It’s time for us to pick another Deep Fried Ambassador, a blogger whose enthusiasm for the N.C. State Fair is close to our own. We’ve been impressed with the deep-fried passion of our previous winners Ashlee and Suzanne. Last year, Ashlee from…

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Artist Spotlight: David Nail

Country singer/songwriter David Nail has been chasing his musical dreams since he graduated from high school in a small southeastern Missouri town. Though he grew up playing baseball and was expected to pursue that career path, when it came time to decide what direction he wanted his life to go, Nashville was where he headed. Nail credits Elton John as one of the main reasons he started singing and calls Country Music Hall of Fame inductee Glen Campbell his all-time favorite star. When in the recording studio, Nail strives to bridge the gap between traditional country and the sounds of soulful masters like Lionel Richie and…

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Cultivate a career at this year’s fair

Promoting the agriculture industry and consumer education have long been at the core of the State Fair’s mission. A new exhibit at this year’s fair, Cultivate A Career, will add to this great tradition. Located near gate 12, the exhibit is designed to highlight the importance of agricultural careers to our economy in a fun and interactive environment. Visitors will have the chance to “test drive” a high-tech tractor, try their hand at building a small-scale model barn, analyze plant and animal specimens with a microscope and promote their experiences within the exhibit to others. All of these activities are…

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