Several new events have been added including flat track racing and more demolition derby heats.
By LAURE CIOFFI
VINDICATOR NEW CASTLE BUREAU
NEW CASTLE, Pa. -- If it's cows you want to see, the Lawrence County Fair is your best bet this week.
The six-day fair features one of the best selections of cows of any county fair in the state, organizers say.
"If you can win a blue ribbon [with a cow] here, then you can go just about anywhere and compete," said Dr. Jeff McKissick, fair board president.
The 49th Annual Lawrence County fair kicks off Monday and will feature just over 600 dairy cattle, 150 beef cattle, 275 pigs and 200 sheep along with the usual 4-H competitions, food and carnival rides.
This year features the largest number of dairy cows to compete in the fair since its inception, McKissick said.
"We have over 600 head of dairy cows and only two new exhibitors. We have a good core of Lawrence County and surrounding county people that come each year," McKissick said.
Fair organizers are introducing flat track motorcycle and four-wheel ATV racing to the event in place of big-name entertainment.
Organizers say that in the past they have had big-name performers, such as country music stars Brad Paisley and Chad Brock, but have failed to make much money on their concerts.
They are hoping the track racing, which is open to all ages and various types of dirt bikes and quads, will be more successful, said Adam Dean who is in charge of the racing.
Races started in July year in anticipation of the fair and will continue through October, he said.
The three-eighths-mile flat track is open to 20 classes of racers Wednesday, Dean said.
There will also be some changes in the popular demolition derby. There will be a separate heat for small cars Saturday.
"It is without a doubt the biggest single event of fair week, both in terms of participants and attendance," said Dave McConnell, fair board member.
"Adding the small-car division increases the opportunity for more drivers to enter."
The big cars will participate in three heats with the top three finishers in each heat advancing on to the final. First place wins $500. A combine demolition derby, added last year, is back again too.
Fair organizers say they are most proud of keeping the fair affordable and accessible for families.
Admission for the first few days includes all rides and grandstand entertainment.
"We are not a Grange fair anymore, but we still try to follow true to our roots and provide good, wholesome family entertainment," McKissick said.