With a hint of fall in the air, it’s time to visit the petting zoo, get on a carnival ride and watch a tractor pull.

That and much more is on the schedule for Thursday through Sunday, Sept. 16 to Sept. 19, as the Alcorn County Fair makes its return at Crossroads Arena. Like many events, it was canceled for Covid-19 in 2020.

“I think everybody’s ready to get out of the house a little bit,” said Sandy C. Mitchell, one of the fair organizers. “It just seems like county fair weather. It’s just a fun time to get outside and visit with your neighbors.”

The carnival opens at 5 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 4 p.m. on Saturday. Mitchell said the carnival operator will be taking all precautions with sanitizing rides. And the fair is taking all precautions as well, providing plenty of sanitizers and washing stations.

A couple of events will be indoors – EPW wrestling featuring Kevin Nash at 8 p.m. Friday and the Fairest of the Fair Pageant, which has moved from Saturday to Sunday afternoon with registration at 1 p.m. and the pageant at 2:15 p.m.

“Fortunately, our arena is big enough that we can maintain social distancing and do what we need to do to keep everybody safe,” said Neil Cockrell, the arena’s event manager.

Live music is set for the outdoor stage at 8 p.m. nightly with Sanders & Mitchell on Thursday, Hopeless on Friday and Vince Moreno on Saturday.

The livestock show, with 180 head of cattle expected, is set for 10 a.m. Saturday. The cheer-off, with squads from the local schools, Northeast and Blue Mountain performing, is set for 5 p.m. Saturday.

Camel rides will be a new addition this year. Mitchell said the lawnmower pull draws a big crowd, and the steak cook-off, which is set for 10 a.m. Saturday, has been a tasty draw for several years, as well.

The gate fee is $5 Thursday evening and $8 Friday and Saturday. Kids 5 and under are admitted free. Hours are 5 to 10 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 4 to 10 p.m. Saturday. Armbands will be $15 all three nights for unlimited rides.

Staff Writer

Jebb Johnston is a 1991 Alcorn Central High School graduate and a 1995 Ole Miss journalism graduate. His primary beats are city and county government.

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