Thursday, February 10, 2011

It's opening day for the Florida State Fair

It's opening day for the Florida State Fair

TAMPA — Grab your kids and perhaps your antacids. This city's brightly colored, goat-bleating, fried-dough-tempting, music-cranking extravaganza has arrived.
The Florida State Fair.

Beginning today at 10 a.m., the annual fair will offer oodles of rides, games, concerts and so-bad-it's-good grub for between $5 and $12 admission, depending on your age and the day you visit.

Rides, food and some shows cost extra.
It all ends Feb. 21, but there's plenty to do until then.

• Friday night is the big Corndogs and Country concert at the 1-800-Ask-Gary Amphitheatre, featuring five headliners. Tickets, available at, are $20 and include fair admission.

• The High School Jazz Festival will take place all day at the special events center.

• Cheer and dance competitions happen all day Saturday and Sunday.

• There is a talent show Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

• Country Gold concerts, featuring Leroy Van Dyke, Jim Ed Brown, Helen Cornelius, Moe Bandy, Joe Stampley and Bobby Bare, are at noon and 4 p.m. Feb. 16 in the entertainment hall.

• Nock Helicopter Trapeze shows fly over the fairgrounds on weekdays at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m. and 5 p.m.

• Fireworks start at 8:30 p.m. each Friday and Saturday.

• Other daily shows include: the Welde Bear Show, the Hollywood Racing Pigs, the Giraffe Exotic Menagerie, the Sea Lion Splash and the Kachunga Alligator show and a Blues Brothers tribute show.

It's opening day for the Florida State Fair

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