FLETCHER, N.C. – The excitement is building with less than three weeks to go until the opening of the 2022 N.C. Mountain State Fair Sept. 9-18 in Fletcher. An adorable otter water show, an alligator show and a thrilling high-wire act will join the fairgrounds entertainment lineup, along with a dozen new food and merchandise vendors.
“People love coming to the fair for the mix of traditional and new, and this year’s lineup has both,” said fair general manager Sean McKeon. “It’ll be hard to resist the cuteness of the Otter Adventure show sponsored by Chick-fil-A Airport Road or the excitement and daring of the High Flying Pages balancing high above the heads of fairgoers. But fair guests will also be able to check out the high-energy clogging competition, agricultural exhibits, handmade crafts, music, rides, antique farm equipment plus a number of engaging free grounds entertainers.”
For those looking for a food adventure, dill pickle lemonade and butterbeer – a butterscotch flavored, ice creamy delight popularized in the Harry Potter books – make their debut at the Mountain State Fair. Cole’s Southern BBQ, featuring pork, ribs, chicken, brisket and burnt ends, also joins the fair’s culinary lineup.
Other new food vendors are Appalachian Sno, Carolina Tea & Soda Company, Gripps Grill Catering Concessions, J and Y Sales, Kettle Corn King, Konlee’s Kones, Little Red Grill and Now That’s Fudge!
State’s No. 1 industry – agriculture – on display
North Carolina’s $92.9 billion ag and agribusiness industry will be well represented at the Mountain State Fair from livestock shows throughout the fair highlighting junior and adult competitors and top area animals to leading agricultural commodities and forestry exhibits. Special agricultural exhibits include the popular Moo-ternity Ward, featuring a live calf birth daily, along with the Mobile Dairy Classroom, Farmer’s Bill Ag-Venture, and The Barnyard, with its display of livestock.
Returning favorites include the Human Cannonball; Brad Matchett’s Agricadabra Magic Show and Comedy Hypnotist Show; Extreme Illusions & Escapes, featuring Las Vegas-style illusions; singer Leon Jacobs; the friendly dinosaurs of Dakota and Friends and the dynamic Kenyan Safari Acrobats.
Music, Clogging and Special Competitions
The Mountain State Fair is well known for showcasing the best of mountain crafts and entertainment and fairgoers can see that through a number of competitions throughout the fair.
The Carolina Farm Credit Mountain Music Festival, featuring performances by talented local bluegrass bands, will take place daily at 6 p.m. except on Sundays when it will start at 2 p.m. Rest your feet and enjoy the music.
The Clogging Competition draws top performers from the area to this United Clogging Association sanctioned event. The stage comes alive Sept. 9 and 10 with performers competing for $6,600 in prize money.
The N.C. Mountain State Fair Pageant returns Sept. 10 at 11 a.m. on the Mountain Music Stage in Heritage Circle.
On Sept. 13 the fair will host an Ice Cream Eating Contest that you can sign up for that day. The competitions are open to the first 20 competitors to sign up in the youth classes and the first 25 in the adult class. Competitions are divided by age groups, with five categories: 5-7 years old; 8-12 years old; 13-17 years old; adults 18 and up.
Rounding out the music competitions is the Gospel Singing Contest on Sept. 17, beginning at 9 a.m. Individuals, duos and groups will compete for up to $2,100 in premiums.
The Mountain State Fair runs Sept. 9-18. The fair celebrates the people, agriculture, art and traditions of Western North Carolina. In addition to these promotions, discounted tickets are now available at participating Ingles stores and online at https://www.wncagcenter.org. More information about the fair is also available at www.wncagcenter.org.
–Sean McKeon, N.C. Mountain State Fair