The 53rd annual Town and Country Days will begin in earnest Monday.
While grand opening ceremonies are at 6 p.m., it is preceded by the prince and princess contest at 5 p.m. and baked goods auction at 4:30 p.m. The Little Miss, Pre-Teen, Miss Teen, and Queen's pageants will take the stage at 6:30 p.m. Other activities that evening include the always popular stock demolition derby at 7 p.m., fun horse show at 6 p.m. and of course Deshler Amusements, as they are offered each night from 6-11 p.m.
The carnival amusements begin at 4 p.m. Friday and are also open from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday. Carnival rides are free with admission; admission for age five and up is $8 per day, Monday through Thursday, and $9 on Friday and Saturday. Season passes are available for $30.
The Henningsens will take the fair stage Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. Their single ‘American Beautiful’ is getting a lot of radio play.
Though the fair doesn't really start until Monday, there are a few activities on Saturday and Sunday. Saturday offers a flea market, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and horse show, noon. The flea market returns Sunday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. A car show is held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Produce as well as arts and craft entries will be accepted from 1-6 p.m. Arts and crafts will be on display in a new building next to Gamble Shelter. Livestock will also be accepted at the barns from 8-11 a.m. and 1-4 p.m.
Tuesday is highlighted by a musical entertainment sponsored by EQT. The Henningsens will undoubtedly sing their radio hit "American Beautiful" when they take the fair stage at 8:30 p.m.
The family trio's debut may be an American spirit story wrapped up in a love song, but in lyrics like "we're a little unusual, we are American beautiful," there's a window into the unlikely story of a group whose musical journey has been anything but typical.
They are Brian Henningsen (bass, guitar, vocals) family patriarch and father of 10 including eldest son Aaron (guitar, vocals) and daughter Clara (lead vocals, guitar).
On their Arista Nashville debut, The Henningsens showcase a sound that is fresh, vibrant, and uniquely their own, with Clara's expressive and inviting vocals center stage, together with gorgeous family harmonies and vivid storytelling, offering lyrics that paint sometimes traditional themes in non-traditional ways.
It's their gift for songwriting that first began turning heads in Nashville, most notably on the Platinum-certified debut by The Band Perry, who scored big with "You Lie," written by Aaron, Clara, and Brian, and the two-week number-one smash, "All Your Life," penned by Brian and Clara.
On tour with Brad Paisley through the summer of 2013, The Henningsens are fast becoming fan-favorites, musically and personally. Friendly, gracious, unassuming, and fun to be around, they share the candor and sometimes merciless teasing of family, and while they'll be the first to say that it can be unusual to see two generations of family living and working so closely together, they love doing it-and they hope that it might be a positive inspiration to others.
Matt Enik will open for them at 7 p.m., the same time the all-terrain vehicle/motorcycle drag races begin.
On Wednesday, 8:30 p.m., a Taylor County, W.Va., country group, Taylor Made, will perform. Comprised of siblings Wendy Williams, Greg Duckworth, and Brian Duckworth, the group's hallmark is their three-part sibling harmony. That style is debuted in their first single "Heavy Duty Beauty". "Our mom taught us to sing," explains Wendy. "We would all sing on the back porch and the neighbors would holler out songs they wanted us to sing." Despite being raised in a home where music was a way of life rather than a hobby, the siblings of Taylor Made are the only three out of the seven total Duckworth siblings who have taken to performing as adults.
Dominion is sponsoring both Taylor Made and opener Tristen "T-Bone" Smith, who performs at 7 p.m.
That night the track area will feature a rodeo beginning at 8 p.m.
Thursday is Senior Citizens Day with seniors age 65 and up given free admission from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information on senior activities see the article on page 9A.
Also on Thursday, the FFA/4-H auction is held in the barn beginning at 7 p.m. Peoples Bank is sponsoring a Sing Off on the main stage beginning at 6:30 p.m. The track will feature 4x4 truck and tractor pulls beginning at 7 p.m.
Friday's headliners are The Bellamy Brothers at 8:30 p.m. The Brothers developed their own sound and scored perhaps the biggest hit of their career in 1976 with "Let Your Love Flow." The song was a smash in both the U.S. and Europe, shooting to the top of the Pop charts and helping establish an international fan base that still eagerly awaits the Bellamys' annual pilgrimage overseas.
The Brothers continued to produce number-one hit after number-one hit in the years that followed, totaling more than a dozen chart-topping singles in the U.S. and Europe. "If I Said You Had A Beautiful Body (Would You Hold It Against Me)," "Sugar Daddy," "Dancin' Cowboys," "Do You Love As Good As You Look," "Redneck Girl," "When I'm Away From You," "I Need More Of You," "Old Hippie," "Kids of the Baby Boom," "Too Much Is Not Enough," "Crazy From the Heart," "Santa Fe" and "I Could Be Persuaded" are just some of the Bellamys' top-10 hits that populated the pop/rock and country charts from the 1970s into the 1990s.
Opening for the Bellamy Brothers will be The Ebert Brothers at 7 p.m.-both sponsored by Stone Energy. The local music legends are celebrating 45 years of entertaining. The late Norbert Ebert was the long-time music chairman of Town and Country Days.
The track will feature the week's second demolition derby at 7 p.m.
Other stage acts are some up-and-comers in the country music industry.
The fair culminates on Saturday with the anticipated return of country music star Aaron Tippin, Back by popular demand, Tippin has charted more than 30 hits on Billboard's Hot Country Songs including several number ones such as: "There Ain't Nothin' Wrong with the Radio", "That's as Close as I'll Get to Loving You", and "Kiss This". Following Sept. 11, 2001, he released the political composition "Where the Stars and Stripes and the Eagle Fly", which became a theme for soldiers fighting overseas.
Chesapeake Energy is sponsoring both Tippin and opener Zac Paxton at 7 p.m. They will both be preceded on the stage by the talent show winners at 6:30 p.m.
Saturday is also a day for children and teen games beginning at 10 a.m. The pretty baby contest will commence at noon and a horseshoe pitching contest will begin at 1 p.m.
For a schedule of events visit townandcountrydays.org.