In just a few weeks, the 57th Annual Kiwanis Ogeechee Fair will open in Statesboro, but the time is now for signing up to participate in the kick-off parade.
The six-day fair always begins with a bang as downtown streets are filled with people lining up to watch the parade, which starts at 5 p.m. Monday, Oct. 15. The fairgrounds on Fair Road (Hwy. 67) open at 6 p.m. that night.
Beauty queens, dignitaries, classic cars and trucks, antique tractors, dance groups, high school bands and more will join the parade, with floats adhering to the theme “Agriculture – Pioneer Days to Modern Ways.” Floats will be judged for cash prizes, said Kiwanis Fair Parade Chairman Charles Sheets. Judges will note the floats’ reflecting the theme.
In order to participate in the parade, whether walking, riding or driving, groups or individuals must register. Registration forms may be downloaded at www.kiwanisogeecheefair.org, and applications will be taken up until noon Oct. 10, he said. Rules and guidelines are on the website. People may pass out candy, but are asked not to throw it, and horseback riders will be asked to pay a $5 fee to help pay for cleanup after the horses. The City of Statesboro requires a clean-up crew to pick up waste.
The parade route begins at East Olliff Street and North Main Street. Participants will be given a spot in the line-up, and when the parade kicks off at 5 p.m., the route will follow North to South Main streets, to Fair Road. The parade ends at the intersection beside Wendy’s and CVS Pharmacy, he said.
After the parade, horseback riders are asked to follow the Willie McTell Trail back to the Mulberry Street parking lot behind Coastal Countertops, where horse trailers will be parked.
· Applications for all entries (downloadable from the website) must be received by noon on the Wednesday before the fair. Parade waivers must be faxed to 912-764-2149, with attention to Trish Tootle, or mailed to Chuck Sheets, 3018 Hawks Ridge Drive, Statesboro, GA 30461-4220.
Sheets may also be contacted at 912 - 587-9232.
The Kiwanis Ogeechee fair is an annual fund raiser for the Statesboro Kiwanis Club, which filters the proceeds back into the community through donations, scholarships and awards.
While every9ne is invited to attend, the contests, livestock shows and competitions are limited to residents, including FFA and 4-H members, from seven counties - Bryan, Bulloch, Candler, Evans, Jenkins, Screven and Tattnall.
The fair will be open from Monday October 15 until closing on Saturday October 20. There are admission specials listed on the site and on some days, wrist stamps will be available for unlimited rides.
This year, a new competition is sure to draw kids and adults alike. The Lego competition will consist of teams made up by one child and one adult, and no kits or prefabricated creations will be provided. Teams provide their own Legos and additional rules are available on the Kiwanis fair website. The competition will start at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 16 in the Arts and Crafts building.
The agricultural fair includes a midway by Amusements of America, with thrill rides and a kiddie land section, as well as farm and agriculture displays, grist mill, beekeeper’s exhibit, an old farm house, petting zoo and racing pigs attractions.
Live entertainment nightly, including music, draws crowds as much as the delicious foods; several food and novelty vendors will be found on the Heritage Village, as well as elsewhere around the fairgrounds.
Local arts and crafts, youth club projects, baked and canned goods as well as crops and vegetables will also be on exhibit and up for competition. Livestock shows will be held nightly at the livestock barn, and a rabbit show will take place as well.
The Statesboro Herald will be covering various events throughout the week of the fair.
Herald reporter Holli Deal; Saxon may be reached at (912) 489-9414.