DOVER-FOXCROFT — The Piscataquis Valley Fair is a labor of love but that labor involves more than 100 volunteers who contribute hundreds of hours in its planning, operation and cleanup.
The fair, one of the state’s oldest agricultural fairs, will open at 10 a.m. today and will run until 4 p.m. Sunday.
Organizers recognize they are competing once again with the American Folk Festival in Bangor that begins Friday night but are hopeful that those who have been loyal to the fair in past years will continue to support the local event.
“This year’s entertainers are from Maine,” Deanne Merrill, fair association secretary, said Tuesday. Dave Mallett will perform at 7 p.m. on opening night followed by the Misty Mountaineers at 7 p.m. Friday. Saturday’s entertainment will be Ken and Jane Brooks, followed by Perley Curtis. The Mueller Family will conclude the entertainment at 11 a.m. Sunday.
Smokey’s Greater Shows will provide the midway for the fair, according to Merrill, whose husband Donnie serves as this year’s association president. Vice President is Alan Johnson.
Senior citizens will be admitted for $3 on Saturday while the general admission on other days is $6 for those over 10 years of age. Admission for children ages 5-10 is $2, and children under 5 years old will be admitted free.
Proceeds from the gate receipts are pumped back into the fair and the fairgrounds, according to Merrill. Over the past year, a new ice cream parlor was constructed to serve fairgoers.
Horse, tractor, pedal tractor and truck pulls are planned for the fair. In addition, the popular demolition derby, pig scramble, pie judging, frog-jumping contest, magic show, wrist-wrestling competition, a youth market lamb auction and show, skillet throw, animal costume parade, and bingo will be among the offerings.
Fireworks will be displayed on opening night, according to Merrill.
Off-duty officers with the Piscataquis County Sheriff’s Department will once again provide security at the fair. The fair provides a stipend to the association whose officers donate their time. The association uses the funds for charitable purposes.