Matchett demonstrates the art of hypnosis at his family friendly show

It’s no secret the State Fair offers a variety of events. It is the perfect place to find something for each family member, whether it’s cotton candy, the giant Ferris wheel, or listening to bluegrass music at Heritage Circle. I bet you didn’t know that there are multiple performances catered to entertain the entire family, from ages four to ninety-four. One of them being the Comedy Hypnotist show performed by Brad Matchett. This family-friendly Vegas-style show is one you will not want to miss due to its highly anticipated return for the first time since 2017. Brad uses volunteers picked…

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Coin-Cutter Ken Sims will Turn Foreign and U.S. Currency into Unique Jewelry Pieces at N.C. State Fair

Coin-Cut Jewelry

Artist Ken Sims began collecting coins at an early age. His hobby developed out of his love for traveling. He would return from a trip with currency in his pocket and want to keep the coins, whether shiny or dull, to remember his travels, especially foreign currency.  “I was in awe of some of the designs, “ revealed Sims, who will be a new vendor in the Village of Yesteryear at the 2022 N.C. State Fair. “I did nothing with them for a long time. I just put them in a bin, but it wasn’t until I lived in Argentina…

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Raleigh Area Enameled Jewelry Artist Hopes to Inspire Fair Visitors to Craft at any Age

Black and White necklace

You may never know when you will accidentally stumble upon your artwork when you are an artist. Linda Payne, a Fuquay-Varina resident who is very modest about her beautiful jewelry designs, will never forget that one time she stepped into a local Chinese take-out restaurant in the Raleigh area.  “I paid for my food, turned around, and noticed the woman behind me was wearing my black and white enameled earrings. I recognized my work immediately,” recalled Payne.  “She noticed that I looked at her, so I spoke and told her I designed and made the earrings she was wearing. I…

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The Public House in three “E’s” – beer escape, exposure and education

Many people who go the N.C. Public House at the N.C. State Fair are simply looking for a place to relax and take a break, according to Lisa Parker, the executive director of the N.C. Craft Brewers Guild. The guild brought the Public House to the fair for the first time in 2017, and in 2021 it moved from the Heritage Circle area to the south side patio of Dorton Arena – the side toward the giant SkyGazer Ferris wheel. People who visit can escape the excitement of the midway and just enjoy a couple of craft beer samples in…

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Agricadabra makes agriculture magical and funny

If you are looking for somewhere to take the whole family, you’ve come to the right place. At the N.C. State Fair, you will find a handful of highly talented musicians, delicious food, and entertaining performances. One, in particular, and a family favorite, is Agricadabra. Hosted by entertainer Brad Matchett, Agricadabra is a family-friendly magic show that is not only fun but educational. Using volunteers from the audience, Brad highlights all things agriculture within North Carolina. The show dives into fun farming topics, such as the average age of the farmers in your state, questions about chicken and egg production,…

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New generation of apple farmers take over Heritage Circle cider booth

Trey Enloe grew up selling apples on the front porch of his mom’s shop in Bat Cave. Now, the fifth-generation apple farmer is selling his apple products to a slightly larger crowd each October during the 11-day run of the N.C. State Fair. Last year, Trey and his wife, Melissa, took over the operation of the apple cider booth in Heritage Circle from long-time operators Susan and Jourard Lingg. The Linggs had posted a message the year before on an apple association message board sharing that they were interested in retiring from operating a booth at the Fair. “When I…

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N.C. State Fair | Homegrown Music Fest

For the eighth year in a row, the North Carolina State Fair has teamed up with Deep South Entertainment to bring fairgoers a taste of the rich fabric of music and culture that North Carolina has to offer. This year, you’ll find expanded performance times on the Heritage Circle stage, performances will run until 9p.m. on the weekends–there is nothing finer than a hot apple cider and live music down in Heritage Circle. Another new feature, Brad Machett’s Comedy Hypnosis Show is back at the N.C. State Fair and will be closing down the Live & Local Waterfall stage each…

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A Longtime N.C. State Fair Fan is Ready to Taste the State’s Best Chili in the 2022 Home Chef Challenge

Bowl of chili

For 11 days each October, the N.C. State Fairgrounds turns into a delicious culinary playground. This season, the North Lobby of the Dorton Arena will have the sensational aromas of home chefs cooking their best recipes in hopes of winning $500 and bragging rights in the 2022 Home Chef Challenge.  Raeford resident Dewayne Smith has attended the N.C. State Fair for 35 years. This season he is ready to chow down on homemade chili as one of the panel judges for The Great Bowls of Fire Chili Cook-Off presented by Carolina Cooker.  When Smith read about the contest in the…

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How a Notorious Doodler Turned Her Doodling Into Functional Wood Burning Art

Martin Birdhouse with Sunflower Design by Jeanette Egan

One of the most popular exhibits at the N.C. State Fair is the Village of Yesteryear. More than 75 crafters dressed in period clothing will spend eleven-hour exciting days educating fair visitors in this “working-artist” interactive exhibit that features traditional heritage handcrafts. Jeanette Egan, who specializes in pyrography and woodburning, will make her Village of Yesteryear debut this October. “I’m in awe to be part of the Village of Yesteryear this year. This is a fabulous opportunity to be able to educate others on the art of wood burning,” said Puerto-Rican artist Jeanette Egan, a descendant of the Taino Boriken…

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Military Appreciation Day celebrates and honors the brave men and women who serve

Paying tribute to the men and women of the U.S. Military and honoring their service has been the goal of the N.C. State Fair’s Military Appreciation Day since 2006. In 2014, a Military Appreciation Day Parade was held for the first time and today, it continues to be one of the best parts of the day’s events. This year, the parade features an impressive lineup including the N.C. National Guard’s Bradley Fighting Vehicle, N.C. A&T Cold Steel Drumline, Athens Drive High School Marching Band, Casey Cardinal, Carolina Hurricanes mascot Stormy, Smokey Bear, an extensive collection of antique tractors and more…

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