Despite temperatures in the mid-90s, fairgoers came out in force for Day One of the 42nd annual event, featuring carnival rides, an animal showcase and an evening of family fun.Terry Pangburn, a member of the Cumberland County Cooperative Fair Association's board of directors, expects the fair's new attractions should bring in large crowds all week long.The temperatures -- which are expected to push the county into a heat wave today -- shouldn't keep the crowds away, Pangburn said.
Billy goat races pump up the crowds during the first night of the Cumberland County Fair in Millville Monday night July 5, 2010. - Staff photo/Cody Glenn
"I'd rather see it hot than wet," he said. "I don't think that'll hurt the fair. There's lots of shade and trees, with plenty of places to sit and enjoy an ice cream."This year's carnival includes a demolition derby and amateur truck pull, where visitors will race their vehicles while pulling a weighted sled, he said.
Additions of a roaming clown and puppeteer should appeal to families, too, he said.
Danielle Godfrey, 10, of Milmay was keeping cool beneath a 4-H tent, where she and her sister Caitlin were competing in an animal exhibit with their two rabbits."For me, the fair is all about showing," she said, holding up her rabbit, Cookie. "I'm here to share my bunny. We have so much fun here.
"Exhibitors brought in box fans and were using a communal fridge, freezing water bottles to keep the animals cool.
Richard Nicosia, owner of Bridgeton-based R N' J catering company, said he was excited about his first year as a vendor at the fair and not too worried about the temperatures."A lot of people stayed home for the Fourth of July for local events and picnics," he said from behind his barbecue stand on the fair's grounds. "There's a good crowd. It's great to see the people of Cumberland County come out and have a great time locally."
Pangburn said the fair -- the oldest in the state -- has an additional pull for locals, because it is an affordable choice for summer fun."People aren't really traveling -- whether they can't afford the gas or to go on the boardwalk," he said. "There's a lot of free entertainment here."
Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for kids ages 6 to 12 and kids 5 and younger are free. Kids are admitted free Wednesday.From:thedailyjournal.com