SEMO District Fair 2010: The best free events at this year's fair

Monday, September 6, 2010

This year, the SEMO District Fair is brimming with more free events than ever -- at least 25, says longtime fair director Pete Poe.

"You could go to the fair every day and still not see all the free things," says Poe. "I'm looking forward to the entire eight days. We have a great lineup of entertainment."

TBY consulted Poe for the best free events at this year's fair, set for Saturday, Sept. 11, through Saturday, Sept. 18. Take your pick!

1. Antique Tractor Pull

Get ready for some old-fashioned fun with the Antique Tractor Pull at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 11, in the grandstand. This free event is produced by the Egypt Mills Antique Tractor Club.

2. Livestock viewing and judging

Livestock will be on display for all eight days of the fair. Look for dairy cattle, mules, draft horses, poultry and more in the Livestock Arena and Poultry Tent.

3. Activities Tent

Stop by for a variety of free activities each day, including bingo, karaoke contests, the SEMO Fair Pageant, senior activities sponsored by Montgomery Bank and live music from Common Thread, Crossroads Gospel, Mark Rees and Reminisces Country Music.

4. Grandkid-friendly events

If you're taking the grandkids to the fair this year, there are plenty of free events geared toward youngsters. Kenny Ahern's Family Variety Theatre, held on the North Fairgrounds, features a stage performer who gets the kids involved in his act. Woody's Menagerie & Wildlife Exposition, set up on the South Fairgrounds, includes a petting zoo, domestic and exotic wildlife displays and educational presentations.

5. Midwest Classic Horse Show

This event, affiliated with the Heart of America Walking Horse Association, will feature a number of events including competitors of all ages. View gaited and Western halter, leadline, pleasure racking, open performance and more, all with two judges, an announcer and an organist. This freebie event kicks off at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 12, in the grandstand.

6. 4-H/FFA Tractor Rodeo

Yee-haw! An alternative take on the rodeo begins at noon on Friday, Sept. 17, on the East Fairgrounds.

7. Bootheel Draft Horse Challenge

The area's best draft horses will pull weighted sleds at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 12, at the North Fairgrounds.

8. Trivia contest

Teams of six to eight are invited to test their smarts in the fair's first-ever trivia contest. Teams must register at the fair office by 5 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 12. The contest takes place at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 13.

9. 10th Annual Heartland Idol Finals

Watch performances from Southeast Missouri's wannabe singers and songstresses at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 15, in the grandstand. The event also includes a special presentation of SEMO Fair Pageant winners.

10. People watching

Find a cool, comfortable place to sit and watch others enjoying the fair. You never know who you'll bump into at the SEMO District Fair!

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