By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
Oklahoma County residents of all ages are invited to join In the competition during the 101st annual Oklahoma County Free Fair. The Free Fair will be held at Oklahoma State Fair Park, Thursday through Saturday, August 20-22 in Oklahoma City. The fair features a wide assortment of competitions, special activities and a Horse Show.
Most events take place in the Centennial Building, with the Horse Show in Barn 8, and Poultry and Rabbits in Barn 3 from August 20-22.
Participants can enter their creations in a variety of categories from home food preservation, baking, flower arranging, garden produce, woodworking, quilting, photography and arts & crafts.
“The Oklahoma County Free Fair allows residents to show off their talent and creativity,” said LaDonna Hines, Oklahoma County OSU Cooperative Extension Director. “We also have many special activities and contest.”
To exhibit at the fair, Oklahoma County residents need to bring their items to the Centennial Building from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday, August 20.
Any exhibit entered in the fair must have been made, grown, or constructed during the past year, unless otherwise noted in the official fair book. The Oklahoma County Free Fair Book lists all categories, as well as a schedule of the special activities and contests.
The fair book can be found online or can be picked up at the Oklahoma County OSU Cooperative Extension Center, 2500 N.E. 63rd Street, in Oklahoma City.
“There is no fee for entrees in the county fair, or to take part in any of the special contests or events,” explained Hines. “Our fair provides people with a wonderful opportunity to see how they do in competition with others, perhaps as a preparation for the Oklahoma State Fair.”
“Residents compete with others who have the same hobbies and interests and win not only blue ribbons, but cash prizes as well,” said Hines,
On Friday, August 21, the Centennial Building is open from 2 – 7 p.m. allowing exhibits to be viewed after judging. That evening, starting at 6:30 p.m. in Barn 8, the Horse Show begins and it continues Saturday at 9 a.m. and throughout the day.
“We plan Saturday morning as a fun day for the whole family,” continued Hines. Saturday, August 22, at the Centennial Building the Oklahoma County 4-H will have their annual kick off with the Family Fun Indoor Carnival along with the OSU Insect Zoo.
The first contest on Saturday morning will start at 9:30 a.m.
If a 4-H member wins a blue ribbon, they automatically qualify and they take their exhibit on to the state fair.
“We invite youth to bring their ice cream toppings and container and compete in the “Ice Cream Sundae Making” contest,” Hines said. “Sundaes will be judged for presentation and creativity and youngsters can win ribbons and cash prizes.”
The next activity is the “Kiddy Tractor Pull” for children 12 years and younger. Kids can compete by pulling weights while driving pedal tractors. Those who win first in their category will qualify for the state event.
There will also be activities for adults, although youth may enter as well. Beginning at 10 a.m., the “Ice Cream Freeze-Off” and the “Saucy Salsa Contest” will take place. These two events offer several different classes.
At 11:30 a.m. the judging of the “Pie Baking” contest begins. Participants are invited to get ready now and find their favorite custard, fruit or nut pie recipe.
The Oklahoma County Livestock Show (Cattle, Swine, Sheep and Goat) will be held September 10-12 at the Jones High School Don Ramsey Agricultural Facility.
“I want to encourage residents to come be part of the events at our county fair,” Hines said. “We truly have something for everyone.”
For more information about the Oklahoma County Free Fair, contact the Oklahoma County OSU Extension Office at 405-713-1125.