Sparkleberry Country Fair Brings Old-Fashioned Fun
The fair features rides, exhibits, entertainment and more.
By Tiffany Barkley
April 24, 2012
Spring Valley, SC---Stepping onto the grounds of the Sparkleberry Country Fair is like stepping back in time
. Watch a blacksmith bend metal. See a sheep's fleece turned into wool. Learn how corn is ground into grits.
Visitors can do all that and more Saturday during the 17th annual fair at the Sandhill Education and Research Center across from the Village at Sandhill.
"We wanted something that would bring people together from all parts of the world — something fun, family-friendly and educational," said event organizer John Monroe.
The event also features amusement rides, a car show, a tractor show, and two stages of live entertainment from Richland Two students and other local groups.
District teachers and administrators will also be participating in the fair's events.
Richland Two's Teacher of the Year Wendy Sherman will serve as Grand Marshall of the tractor and horse race preceding the opening ceremony. The middle school principals will go head-to-head in a cow-milking contest.
Proceeds from the event go to Richland Two in the form of grants and scholarships.
Last year's fair raised $30,000 for the district, Monroe said. The fair presented $12,000 to the district in teacher grants. Eighteen students received $1,000 scholarships.
The fair draws more than 30,000 people to Northeast Columbia each year.
The Northeast area wasn't always bustling with activity though. Monroe, who grew up on a chicken farm near Pontiac, said the area was mostly agricultural back then.
"I grew up out here," he said. "There was virtually nobody from Dentsville to Pontiac."
Monroe and other fair organizers started the event when the area began to grow, Monroe said. The farm theme is in honor of the area's history.
"People can see how it was 50, 75, 100 years ago," he said. "How did people survive back then? This is how they survived."
Admission to the fair is just $5 per car. The fair lasts from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday. The amusement rides will also run from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Friday.
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