A preview of the attractions and events at the 97th Marshall-Putnam Fair
HENRY — The queens of the fair have been chosen, and it’s time to review the many attractions of the 2018 Marshall-Putnam Fair. Beginning today (Wednesday), there will be many returning favorites, as well as some exciting new additions.
On Sunday, Cecelia Lucente, Abbie Stanbary, and Emma Gaspardo were respectively chosen as the Miss M-P Fair Queen, the Junior Miss Fair Queen and the Little Miss Fair Queen. They’ll become familiar sights to fair-goers as they’ll now reign over a wide variety of family friendly fun.
“The down-home country charm,” is what M-P Fair office assistant Lyn Smith described as her favorite thing about the annual fair, which has been held since 1921.
M-P Fair President Rob Stadel was asked about new attractions at this year’s fair.
“We’re excited to bring back the stock pulls and are adding antique tractors, as well. Another new event is the free Wild Times Exotics Animal Exhibit on Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.. We’re also very excited to have tethered hot air balloon rides on Thursday evening beginning at 6:30 p.m. There will be a cost for the balloon rides,” he said.
A “Kick-Off Dinner” will be held from 5 to 7:30 p.m. in the activity building. Diners will have their choice of either rib-eye or pork chop sandwiches with available sides of green beans, sweet corn, applesauce and ice cream. Cooked by M-P-S Beef Producers, the meals for adults will cost $10, and children 10 and under can eat for $5.
Also on the first day of the fair will be non-livestock judging, which will take place throughout the day; the Kroger Kookie Stacking contest at 4 p.m.; harness racing at 5 p.m., which is the fair’s longest-running grandstand event; a talk with author Tim Pletkovich at 5 p.m.; a wine and beer tasting at 5:30 p.m.; music by Cody Caulkins from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.; a hat contest at 7 p.m.; and ag-related crafts from 6 to 7 p.m..
The activities on Thursday will include a senior citizens program from 9 to 11 a.m.; a jeopardy game with author Tim Pletkovich at 11:30 a.m.; crafts and face painting from 4 to 7 p.m.; 4-H STEM Clubs from 4 to 7 p.m.; a balloon artist from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.; inflatables and train rides from 4 to 8:30 p.m.; a climbing wall from 1 to 8:30 p.m.; carnival games from 4 to 7:30 p.m.; master gardener activities from 4 to 8:30 p.m.; ag-related crafts from 6 to 7 p.m.; the antique and stock tractor pulls will begin at 6 p.m.; and tethered hot air balloon rides starting at 6:30 p.m.
Events on Friday will consist of an antique tractor show; surfboard follies at 1 p.m.; cookie decorating at 1:30 p.m.; a beach search contest at 2 p.m.; a conservation education trailer and officer from 4 to 7 p.m.; ag-related crafts from 6 to 7 p.m.; the Power Wheels Derby at 6:30 p.m.; the demolition derby at 7 p.m.; and music by DJ Brain from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.
The Saturday attractions will again include the antique tractor show, as well as a food art contest at 9 a.m.; Down in the Barn activities for children at 10 a.m., including the Cutest Little Farmer, Ponytail and Cutest Little Surfer Dog Contests. July 14 will also include kiddie tractor pull at 11 a.m.; an exotic animal exhibit from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; a character meet-and-greet from 1 to 2:30 p.m.; a potato decorating contest at 3 p.m.; a karaoke contest at 3 p.m.; a frozen T-shirt contest at 4:30 p.m.; ag-related crafts from 6 to 7 p.m.; a performance from the M-P-S Choir at 5 p.m.; the Lucas Oil Supernational Truck and Tractor Pulls at 5 p.m.; and music by the Joe Stamm Band from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Antique tractors will again be on display on Sunday and other attractions include breakfast from 8 to 10 a.m.; an ecumenical church service at 8 a.m.; the Top 50 Car, Truck and Motorcycle Show from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.; a tractor drive from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; the exotic animal exhibit from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; a bocce tournament at 12:30 p.m.; the Dance Central Performance Team at 2 p.m.; the M-P Little Rascals Dance Party for children at 3 p.m.; a cowboy/cowgirl meet-and-greet 3:30 p.m.; chain saw carving auctions at 4:30 p.m.; ag-related crafts from 6 to 7 p.m.; and The Big Hat Rodeo at 6 p.m.
Stadel said the fair’s free admission and parking help set it apart from others in the region and added the large amount of free children’s activities, as well.
M-P Fair personnel are well aware of the hard work that is put into each year’s fair, and they are thankful for everyone’s dedication in making it a success.
“It’s watching it all come together, the countless hours of hard work, the dedication of our volunteers and the support from our communities. Together, this all produces a successful fair,” Stadel said.
M-P Fair office manager DiAnn Kuehn said her favorite part of the fair is “seeing the generations of the ‘fair families’ who return year after year.”
“They’re people you might see only once a year, but they hold a special place in your memories,” she said.
For more information, visit www.marshallputnamfair.org or call 309-364-2814.