Plenty to see at this year's Essex County Fair

Also returning are Gary Finney and the Upstate New Yorkers, who will perform at the grandstand Wednesday in between harness races, which start at noon.

The ever-popular demolition derby has been moved to Saturday this year, commencing Aug. 14. at noon. Tractor pulls will be heldAug. 15 with the 6500 group starting at noon and the 9000 group 5 p.m. at the grandstand. Garden tractor pulls will be held Wednesday, Aug. 11, beginning 5:30 p.m.

Castle Rock Entertainment is once again in charge of midway rides, which operate each day starting at noon. Chainsaw carver The Sawdog also returns and will be auctioning some of his work Aug. 14.

The Essex County Fair Idol Contest returns with auditions being held 6 p.m. Aug. 11 and 2 p.m. Aug. 12. Qualifying contestants will then perform in the final competition 7 p.m. Aug. 13 on the south lawn stage.

Idol contestants compete for cash prizes in three categories: 12 and under, 13-17, and 18 and up.

The contest is open to any Essex County resident and entry fees are included with admission. Auditioners must bring their own CD with backing tracks two hours prior to auditions and should have at least two different types of songs to perform.

Admission to the fair is $10 each for ages three and older. A carload sale of $25 is offered for Wednesday. Both Wednesday and Thursday, seniors can receive a $2 fair food coupon with their paid admission. All rides and parking are free, and grandstand entertainment is free except on Saturday.

For more information on events and activities at the 162nd Essex County Fair, including a complete schedule and exhibitor handbook, visit www.essexcountyfair.org or e-mail countyfairfun@yahoo.com.

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