Photo provided - The St. Joseph County Grange Fair opens tomorrow and runs through Saturday, Sept. 25.

St. Joseph County Fair to get 'Moovin' and Groovin'' at 2021 edition

CENTREVILLE — After a hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the St. Joseph County Fair is back in 2021.

This year’s fair, which runs from Sept. 19-25, will feature what organizers are calling an “action-packed fun-filled week” at this year’s edition.

The biggest change from previous years’ fairs is a brand-new ride company, Skerbeck Entertainment Group out of Fennville, which also handles other fairs in the area including the Allegan County Fair, bringing a brand-new layout with new rides. Along with the change, carnival wristbands can be utilized any day during the week, Monday through Saturday.

Fair organizers noted that entrances will be slightly different for this year’s fair. The Nottawa Street and Burr Oak Street walk-in gates will not be utilized this year, but the Franklin Street gate next to the first-aid station will be used as the lone walk-in gate.

Organizers say there will be plenty of entertainment options for this year’s event all around the fairgrounds. Headlining the grandstand entertainment options will be country music band Diamond Rio, who will perform Saturday, Sept. 25 at 7 p.m. with special guest Cash O’Riley. Tickets for the grandstand and track are $30, and are general admission seats.

Other grandstand events include the farm truck and semi pulls on Sunday at 4 p.m., the brand-new Xtreme Roughstock Rodeo event on Monday at 7 p.m., the Bump-N-Run and Demolition Derby at 7 p.m. Tuesday, the brand-new Combine Derby event at 7 p.m. Wednesday, the NTPA Modified Truck and Tractor Pulls Thursday and Friday at 7 p.m., antique tractor pulls Friday at 10 a.m., and harness racing Tuesday and Wednesday at noon. Grandstand events are $10 for adults and $5 for children 5 to 12 years old. Pit passes are $20.

For the kids, the big daily event will be Luau Logan and the TroPIGal Revue, which will perform three shows daily near the first aid station each day of the fair. The show features puppet characters performing with real-life pigs and goats in a show that organizers say is “guaranteed to be a family favorite.”

Over in the Community Tent, there will be Bingo Monday through Saturday beginning at 9 a.m., as well as a number of different free concerts, including the Tara Renee Band Sunday at 6 p.m., Honey Creek Monday at 6 p.m., The Helmsmen Tuesday at 6 p.m., Si Beaghi Si Mor Wednesday at 6 p.m., Deadwood Thursday at 6 p.m., Matt Schwartz and Friends Friday at 6 p.m., and Wasepi Bluegrass Saturday at 6 p.m. Other events include a charity pie-eating contest at noon Saturday and a number of Focus on Health programs throughout the week.

As for the individual days, Sunday is Opening Day and Family Day, with the 4-H barns, commercial barns and fair food vendors open beginning at 10 a.m. There will be no midway on Sunday. Monday is Kids Day, and will feature free kids’ activities at both the Community Tent and free stage, with the midway opening at 1 p.m. Tuesday is Education Day, with the midway opening up at 3 p.m. Wednesday is Seniors Day, and will feature a COA lunch and program for the senior population from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Thursday is Ladies Day, and will feature the second annual Cookie Bake Off. Participants are asked to enter their favorite cookies at the Grange building from 10 a.m. to noon, with judging beginning at 1 p.m. and winners announced at 2 p.m. A cookbook will be given to the winning baker.

Friday is Veterans Day, with the midway opening at 3 p.m., and Saturday is AG-Education Day with the midway opening at 11 a.m. on the last day of the festival.

The 4-H animal and still exhibit barns will be open to walk through, and different 4-H shows will occur every single day.

Admission for this year’s fair is $8 for adults, with children 10 years and under free. Parking will also be free. On Kids Day Monday , Anyone 18 years and under are free; on Seniors Day Wednesday, those 62 and older will be $5; on Ladies Day Thursday, all ladies will be $5; and on Veterans Day Friday, all veterans will be $5.

More information on this year’s fair can be found at www.centrevillefair.com, or on the St. Joseph County Grange Fair Facebook page.

Robert Tomlinson can be reached at 279-7488 ext. 23 or robert@threeriversnews.com.

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