WELLSBURG - The Brooke County Fair will return next weekend with a variety of live entertainment, competitions for all ages and an assortment of food.
The fair will run Friday through Sept. 8 at Brooke Hills Park. It will open at 4 p.m. on Friday, with opening ceremonies, including a butterfly release courtesy of Butterflies by Heather, at 6 p.m.
Festivities will begin at 11 a.m. on Sept. 7 and 8. Admission is $5 each day, which includes carnival rides. Three-day passes are $10 each and may be purchased at the park's clubhouse.
Paul and Patty Lish, who lead the Brooke County Fair board, said additions this year include the Cogar Family lumberjack show, with the group performing a variety of timber-related stunts in shows at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Sept. 8.
Also appearing this year are the independent wrestlers of Black Diamond Wrestling, with special guest Doink the Clown at 7 p.m. on Friday; the Hill Hoppers Flying Club with its radio-controlled planes and helicopters beginning at noon on Sept. 7 and 8; and through the weekend, the 8th Pennsylvania Regiment, an American Revolution re-enactment group; the Greenfield Petting Zoo and American Indian displays.
There also will be a truck mud bog at 1 p.m. on Sept. 7, a demolition derby at 1 p.m. on Sept. 8 and demonstrations of shooting sports and other skills during the weekend.
The fair is known for its many competitions, including amateur photo, baked goods and cutest baby contest sponsored and benefiting the Brooke County 4-H program. There's also a chili cookoff, Brooke County Queen of Queens Pageant, a pet show sponsored by Thea's Paw Spa on Sept. 8, and horseshoe and high school mud volleyball tournaments, as well as contests testing participants' ability to quickly consume ice cream, pizza and other foods.
This year a team from Franklin Primary School, winner of last year's primary school tug-of-war, will defend the school's right to display the traveling trophy at their school. The competition will begin at noon on Sept. 7.
Joining the Brooke County Fair Idol singing contest, to be held at 1 p.m. on Sept. 7, is the Brooke County Fair's Got Talent contest, which will offer residents with other talents a chance to shine. It will be held at 2:30 p.m. on Sept. 7, with registration at 2 p.m.
Fairgoers also may enter the Minute to Win It contest, which like the television show of the same name, will challenge participants to perform a variety of unusual tasks within a short time. The event will begin at 6 p.m. on Friday, with registration at 5:30 p.m.
On Sept. 8 the Twins Day contest will return, with prizes going to area twins who fall into various categories. Registration will begin at 12:30 p.m. for the event, which will begin at 1 p.m.
Entertainment set for the weekend also includes the Ohio-West Virginia Line Dancers, oldies rock and roll group Front Room, one-man band Aaron Margaria and country and southern rock band Cross Creek on Sept. 7; and vocalist Catherine Losey and classic rock and glam metal band Youth Gone Wild on Sept. 8.
Some of the contests require pre-registration, and forms can be obtained at the fair's website at www.brookecountyfair.org or by calling the park at (304) 737-1236 or West Virginia University Extension Service at (304) 737-3666.
Patty Lish said the fair is a success because of the many area businesses and groups that support it.
Lish noted long-time partners in the endeavor have included the Brooke County 4-H program, whose leaders will help children make assorted crafts through the weekend; and the Brooke County Senior Center, which offers shuttles from the fair's free parking area to the fairgrounds behind Brooke Hills Playhouse.
(Scott can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)