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Town And Country Days Begins In Earnest Monday

August 8, 2012
BY AMY WITSCHEY - Editor ( , Wetzel Chronicle

Town & Country Days, Wetzel County's fair, will officially begin with its grand opening ceremonies at 6 p.m. Monday.

The 52nd annual event includes an impressive line-up of entertainment as well as track events, carnival rides, agricultural activities, and more.

Prior to the grand opening, the Prince and Princess Contest will take the stage Monday at 5 p.m. After the grand opening that will include 2011 Miss Town & Country Days Holli Schell, the stage is dedicated to pageants including the Little Miss, Pre-Teen, Miss Teen, and Queen. At the same time, beginning at 7 p.m., an ATV and Motorcycle Moto-Cross will provide excitement at the track.

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There’s still time to enter your produce and other goods in the competitions at Town and Country Days. Entries will be accepted at the produce shelter and arts and crafts building Sunday from 1-6 p.m. For full guidelines consult a fair book, available at local businesses.

Prior to the official start, on Saturday there will be a flea market, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and horse show, noon. Sunday there is a car show, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., and flea market, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Country band Confederate Railroad will bring their catalog of hits to the stage on Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. Known for their songs "Trashy Women", "Jesus and Mama", "Queen of Memphis", and "Daddy Never Was The Cadillac Kind", Confederate Railroad's concerts cover a wide range of feelings while delivering music from rowdy country to raw emotion. Young people will be there rocking to "Trashy Women", while their parents and even grandparents will likely be singing along to "Jesus and Mama".

The band plays 100 or so dates each year. Whatever the venue, they are right at homebe it a fair, a club, or a biker show. Shirley, the lead singer and vocalist, and his mates, Mark Dufresne on drums, Wayne Secrest on bass, Rusty Hendrix on lead guitar, and Cody McCarver on keyboards and vocals are obviously having fun right along with their appreciative audience. At the end of each show, the band stays around until every fan who wants an autograph, or to pose with the group for a picture or just say "hello" is taken care of.

Also on Tuesday are the 4x4 Truck and Tractor Pulls at 7 p.m.

Wednesday's stage entertainment is the Hussy Ray Band opening for Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper. Award-winning fiddler Michael Cleveland brings dynamic traditional bluegrass to the stage with his award-winning band, Flamekeeper, in a show that will leave the audience talking. An eight-time winner of the International Bluegrass Music Association's Fiddle Performer of the Year award, Cleveland and his talented band present a program of tight vocal trios and duos, blistering instrumentals, and fiddle-and-banjo duets that echo the first-generation stars of bluegrass. The show is rounded out with Cleveland's dry wit and the band's sense of fun. Considered one of the premier bluegrass fiddlers of his generation, Cleveland picked up a fiddle at age four, and his talent was recognized early. In 1993 he was chosen to be part of the Bluegrass Youth All Stars. Later that year Cleveland made his Grand Ole Opry debut as a guest of Alison Krauss. His list of guest appearances over the years is a who's who of bluegrass legends including Bill Monroe, Jim and Jesse, and Ralph Stanley. At the 2001 IBMA awards, Mike took his first Fiddle Performer of the Year award, and shared the title of Entertainer of the Year with Rhonda Vincent and the Rage.

The track event that evening are ATV and motorcycle drag races beginning at 7 p.m.

Highlights for the rest of the week include a local talent show and 4x4 truck and tractor pulls on Thursday, Edens Edge and demolition derby on Friday, and country musician Craig Campbell, pretty baby contest, and mud bog on saturday.

"Town and Country Day's schedule is loaded with delightful reasons for area residents, to attend the fair this year," said Lonnie Blake, president of Town and Country Day's Inc.

"Don't miss 2011 Town and Country Days, Aug. 15-20, with entertainment on stage, track events, carnival rides, snacks, dinners, games, livestock, and exhibits. There will be something for every age to come and enjoy a week at the fair," said Blake. "This year we have strived to make this fair the most entertaining ever, with a good variety for everyone to enjoy. Your suggestions for the future are always welcome, so please let us know what you would like to see more of and perhaps, when feasible, it may become future year's attractions. We encourage you to tell your friends and family about all the fun you have at our county fair."

Daily attractions include Deshler Amusements carnival, free with admission; craft exhibits; farm displays; Bingo; concessions; and more.

Daily admission is $8 or season passes are available for $30. Children under five are admitted free. Senior citizens, age 65 and up, are admitted free until 1 p.m. on Thursday, Senior Citizens Day.



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