By: Tom Fink | Category: Recreation/Leisure | Issue: August 2018
Since 1914, the Rogers County Fair has entertained, amazed, and delighted adult fair-goers and children of all ages with its rides, competitions, animals and events.
This September, the tradition of fun for the whole family continues in Claremore at the 2018 Rogers County Fair.
“The fair is something that everyone remembers from their own childhood, and that’s something that most of us in the fair industry can relate to,” said Lisa Rogers, marketing manager, Claremore Expo and Tourism Development Department. “We have our own memories of going to the fair when we were children, and we want to continue that tradition, even with new spins on it.
“Bringing the fair up-to-date while retaining what a county fair is all about in the first place -- the food, the rides, the animals -- helps people who remember the fair from their own childhood revisit those memories, while making new ones with their own children,” she said. “It goes back to that nostalgia.”
Slated to open on Thursday, Sept. 13 -- a night which draws to a close with a fireworks display -- the Rogers County Fair continues daily through Sunday, Sept. 16, and will include everything that regular fair-goers have come to expect in the annual county celebration: carnival rides, livestock, contests, games, food, entertainment, contests, and more.
2018 Fair books, which include a detailed list of events, and entry forms for some of his year’s competitions are now available online at the Rogers County Fair’s website, www.rogerscountyfair.com.
Forms are currently available online for Commercial/Unregistered Bred and Owned, Rogers County Bred Market Animal Verification, Academic Eligibility, Poultry Show Pre-Entry, Rabbit Show Pre-Entry, Archery Contest Pre-Entry, and 2018 Market and Breeding Hog (Swine) Nomination.
Although the entertainment for the 2018 is still being finalized, one of the newer elements of the Rogers County Fair -- The Cantina -- will be returning again this year.
“The Cantina was first introduced at the 2017 fair, and it’s an area set aside for adult fair-goers to catch up with friends, relax in the shade, enjoy an adult beverage and dance,” Rogers said. “At the Cantina, adults may some adult beverages, and one night, we’ll be bringing in dueling pianos to entertain.
“The dueling pianists play a little bit of everything, much of it based on the audiences’ suggestions,” she said.
Rogers said updates to this year’s entertainment selection will be added to the website as they become available.
“The Rogers County Fair has such a variety of things to see and do,” Rogers said. “Sometimes, our residents don’t always realize everything they can experience at the fair. There’s everything from decorative painting to baking and canning, going back to the roots of what a true county fair is about.”
Fair contests are open to anyone within the county or to members of select organizations within the county, Rogers said.
While fair attendees are predominantly from Rogers County, Rogers said it’s not uncommon for persons to drive from nearby counties to attend the 104-year old event, such as nearby Mayes and Tulsa Counties.
“We basically market to ‘Rogers County plus’, so many of the people who come out every year, which, by our estimation would be in the thousands annually, aren’t even from Claremore or Rogers County, but they go the extra distance to enjoy all the fair here has to offer,” she said. “There are all these outlying cities who can come to the Rogers County to enjoy all the sights, sounds, and things to do at a fair, without having to spend as much as they might, if they were to go to the state fair. The Rogers County Fair is very much a more economical alternative for those who want to enjoy everything that a fair has to offer, but might be more restricted in their resources.”
But being more economical hardly means the Rogers County Fair offers anything less than what fair-lovers have come to expect.
Outside the Claremore Expo grounds, attendees can enjoy a variety of carnival rides, many of which are appropriate for the youngest fair-goers, food options, entertainment, but inside the Expo Center, more fun awaits.
“Inside the Expo hall are the exhibits, but we’ll also feature hand-crafted vendor items, so we’ll have our own little ‘County Square Market’ set up, where you can buy everything from toffee to hand-crafted goods by local artisans, all based on small businesses either from the county or the area,” she said.
And of course, animals.
“The indoor arena will have everything from chickens and rabbits to goats, cows, pigs -- all of these will be showing that week,” she said.
As in previous years, members of 4-H and FFA chapters will be hosting exhibits and displays in crops and horticulture, FFA Agri-Science, Fine Arts, Flower Division, Open Class Home Economics, Rogers County Home & Community Education Department, and Ag Mechanics.
So, whether you’re a veteran of county fairs or it’s your first time, there’s plenty to see and do in Claremore this September at the annual Rogers County Fair.
The 2018 Rogers County Fair will be held on the grounds of the Claremore Expo Center at 400 Veterans Parkway in Claremore.
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