Volunteers help enhance State Fair experiences

“What did you pick for me today,” asked Princeton High School FFA member and Field of Dreams volunteer Collin Worley to a group of kids walking up with their baskets. “Let’s see what you have.” When visitors to the Field of Dreams walk through the exhibit and pick vegetables along the path, they take those items to the market stand where they can learn more about the vegetables. On Sunday, Worley, a senior, was joined by sophomores Blake Martin and Mason Rosenbaum. who stayed busy talking to guests about cucumbers, sweet potatoes and turnips. For many kids, the turnips were…

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Retired NCDA&CS duo brings Field of Dreams to life every year at the State Fair

Gardens showcases N.C. crops from the field to the table Rex and Ruth Sasser are pictured with the “corn field” that is part of the Field of Dreams exhibit presented by the North Carolina Electric Cooperatives. Rex Sasser oversees the planting and management of the crops in the exhibit. His wife Ruth and their daughters travel to Raleigh twice a week from Goldsboro to check on the crops’ progress. It takes a lot of work to put on an event as big as the N.C. State Fair every year. Planning “for next year” is often well underway before the fair…

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Be a farmer for a day at the Field of Dreams exhibit

If you are bringing your elementary and preschool age children to the fair then be sure to swing by the Field of Dreams exhibit sponsored by the North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives.  Here you will find the State Fair farm, featuring 30-plus commodities that are grown in North Carolina. At the exhibit, young fairgoers can “harvest” crops, sell them at the produce shed and use the money to purchase a bag of items at the Field of Dreams store. Also at the exhibit is a school house where children can participate in an agricultural-themed coloring contest where the winner will receive…

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“Field of Dreams” gets to the foundation of food

The “Field of Dreams” has been part of the N.C. State Fair since 2004, but when I visited this year, I found a few folks who somehow had never seen it. I was pretty sad to hear that because the exhibit gets at the heart of what the fair is about. While the fair used to be about showcasing and sharing agricultural practices and equipment amongst farmers (or at least people familiar with farming), it’s now more about a few agricultural folks sharing with the general non-farming public. That’s exactly what “Field of Dreams” does. In a plot of land…

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2016 N.C. State Fair Bucket List

‘Tis N.C. State Fair season and nothing could be finer. And whether you’re a State Fair veteran or a rookie, you know there is something magical about the state fair that is calling your name. Between the cool autumn nights kept well-lit by the carnival midway, the deep-fried delicacies, and the engaging exhibits and entertainment, what’s not to like? To make sure you’re taking full advantage of your time at the fair, we’ve listed some things that you must do at this year’s event, Oct. 13-23. See a concert on every stage. As a part of this year’s Homegrown Music…

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10 fun STEM activities for kids at the State Fair

Learn about the important role bees and pollinators play in producing our food. The Bee Exhibit in the Expo Building features beekeepers and an active beehive on display.

Shhhh… don’t tell the kids! The State Fair is more than fun, it’s also educational. Check out out Top 10 activities to participate in science, technology, engineering and math-oriented (STEM) activities at the fair, Oct. 13-23. 1. The brink floater mussel is the Wildlife Resources Commission’s featured species of the year, and fairgoers can see these freshwater mussels up close to learn more about these invertebrates and their importance to freshwater ecosystems. The exhibit is located near the Village of Yesteryear and the Children’s Barnyard. 2. Stop by the tobacco barn in Heritage Circle to see how tobacco leaves were…

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Casey’s Clubhouse, big slide plus six other fun things for young children

Fair mascot Casey the Cardinal is back and he’s got lots of tips for fairgoers. Read below to find out how to make the most out of the N.C. State Fair if you are a parent with young children in tow. Stroller-drivers, we see you. We know that families love to come to the fair together. And that many of these families have children in the preschool and elementary-age range. If you fit this description then this advice is for you. Here are seven tips for enjoying the fair with young children. Last year I missed out on meeting a…

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Behind the scenes with…Dudley Baggett, landscape manager

Now that the final events have taken place at the State Fairgrounds, things are going to kick into high gear to get everything ready for opening day. One area of preparation – landscaping – has been in high gear for a while now. These guys are headed up by Dudley Baggett, the State Fair’s landscape manager. Dudley has a long checklist of items that have to be done before the Fair opens in 15 days, including everything from weeding and mulching about 3 acres of landscaping beds to mowing about 30 acres of grass around the property. Not to mention…

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