Is there a place other than Missouri where you can find tractor shows, truck shows, cow-milking contests, greased-pig contests, turtle races, tug of war, pumpkin-seed spitting, goat milking, and carnival rides all in one place? I doubt it, because Missouri has some of the best county fairs around, and, fortunately for Missourians, we have entered county-fair season.
Madison County Fair will kick off its jammed-pack weekend of events on Thursday, October 6, at 5 p.m.; events will run until Saturday, October 8, at 9 p.m.
Thursday – Armband night, well actually every night is armband night, but Thursday night will be armband special night. Armbands begin selling at 5 p.m. for $12 each and rides run until 9 p.m. My calculations; you can ride as many rides as possible for only $3 an hour … super affordable fun!
Friday – The fair officially opens! Fredericktown’s historic Berryman Cabin and One-Room Log School will be open for tours. Come on by to see what life was like many, many years ago. Karaoke will begin at 5:30 p.m., so get your vocal cords warmed up, grab your favorite singing pal, and get ready to entertain. Carnival rides will also be going until 9 p.m.; armbands will be $15.
Saturday – This is the day everyone must attend, there will be events for all types of interests … some even I had never imagined! I must say Madison County, Missouri, is home to one creative group of folks. Where can you find an antique tractor pull and turtle race all in the place? The day starts rolling at 8 a.m. and runs until 9 p.m. Armbands will be available for $15 a person; rides run until 9 p.m.
Don’t forget to stop off at all the food vendors and stock up on your fair share of funnel cakes, corn dogs, and cotton candy.
For a complete list of events for the Madison County Fair held at the Jaycee, Wanda Priest and Azalea parks in Fredericktown, please visit Madison County Fair page on VisitMO.com or the Madison County Chamber of Commerce website.
Speaking of fun events in Madison County, the community of Marquand has, for the past 20 years, hosted its Annual Pioneer Days, a fun-filled and colorful experience that has grown immensely over time.
This year’s event opens on the evening of Sept. 30, at Homan Hall Performing Arts Center, where the stage welcomes “Comin’ Home – The Whitener Family.” With roots that run deep in the history of Marquand and Madison County, The Whitener Family offers down-home instrumentals and sweet harmonies. The performance begins at 7 p.m.
On Saturday morning, Oct. 1, the downtown area will explode with activity. Start your morning with breakfast at the Marquand Methodist Church. Later, you’ll find vendors selling an array of food, traditional crafts, art, jewelry, and hand-made items. The park will be alive with children’s games, fun-filled activities and live music.
Around town, you’ll find everything from a car show and a vintage tractor and steam-engine show to sand volleyball games and tours of historic properties. Don’t forget the wine tasting at Durso Hills Bistro and Winery, dining options, a Civil War encampment, archery demonstration and more.
Becky Englehart is a freelance writer who is working with the Madison County Chamber of Commerce. Photo courtesy Corey Warner.