10 highlights of the Champlain Valley Fair – BurlingtonFreePress.com
The Champlain Valley Fair bills its week-and-a-half-long run as Ã¢Â€ÂœThe 10 best days of summer.Ã¢Â€Â Suppose you take that slogan and run with it; if you were indeed to go to the fair for each of those 10 days, what would you do each day? Here are some ideas; all are included with the price of admission unless otherwise indicated. Just make sure to go easy on the cotton candy and fried dough.
ItÃ¢Â€Â™s opening day, so the temptation is to do everything. Pace yourself, scout out the midway scene and then consider going to hear country star Jake Owen in concert at the grandstand with openers The Cadillac Three and Jay Taylor at 7 p.m. ($32.25-$53.25).
Do you think fair food is all about high calories and low quality? The Culinary Classic Ã¢Â€Â“ Fair Style at 2:30 p.m. in the Ware Building might dissuade you of that notion. Chefs Shawn Calley, formerly of The Essex Resort and Spa and Narin Phanthakhot of Butch & BabeÃ¢Â€Â™s create top-notch nosh with food from the fairÃ¢Â€Â™s vendors.
Fido and Spot need good food, too. Dog-biscuit cooking demonstrations with Chef Brandy Allan take place in the Ware Building Annex at 12:30, 3:30 and 5:30 p.m.
The Grandstand is where thousands of people attend ticketed events costing a few bucks, but a few wonÃ¢Â€Â™t cost you a cent. One example is The Wunderlee Circus Extravaganza at 5 p.m.
Judge not lest ye be judged, unless youÃ¢Â€Â™re judging the King Arthur Flour whoopie-pie contest at 4:30 p.m. in the Ware Building Annex.
The fair offers plenty of free music throughout its run, much of which features Vermont acts. One such set of performances features local folk duo Cricket Blue at 11 a.m. and 1:30 and 5:30 p.m. on the Koffee Kup stage.
The best thing you can do all day is show up, as long as you bring some extra change for the Ã¢Â€ÂœLetÃ¢Â€Â™s All Do Something About NothingÃ¢Â€Â fundraiser for the Vermont Foodbank. Cans of Ã¢Â€ÂœnothingÃ¢Â€Â will be on display at many of the food-vendor counters, and contributions left inside will go to the Foodbank. Reward yourself for your good deed by taking in the Double Figure 8 Racing show at 7 p.m. at the Grandstand. ($10 for adults; free for children 12 and under when accompanied by an adult)
That sound you heard a couple of weeks ago came from thousands of tweens crying simultaneously when singer Meghan Trainor, suffering from vocal-cord problems, canceled her show scheduled for tonight at the fair. The fair acted quickly on a replacement Ã¢Â€Â” the young pop group Echosmith, which performs at 7 p.m. $26.75-$48, with all but the lowest-priced tickets including a ride bracelet.
DonÃ¢Â€Â™t forget that fairs like this one are rooted in farms. The 4-H Show Horse event starts in the horse-show ring at 8:45 a.m.
ItÃ¢Â€Â™s really no fair, but after today there will be no fair. So go out on a big note with the country group Little Big Town and opener David Nail at 7 p.m. $32.25-$53.25.
If you go
WHAT: Champlain Valley Fair
WHEN: Friday through Sept. 6
WHERE: Champlain Valley Exposition, Essex Junction
ADMISSION: $5-$12; free for children under 5. $30 for ride bracelets. 878-5545, www.champlainvalleyfair.org
Contact Brent Hallenbeck at 660-1844 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Brent on Twitter at www.twitter.com/BrentHallenbeck.