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Wednesday, September 5, 2012

105th year of Cleveland County Free Fair set to begin Thursday
 
Circus rides are going up at the Cleveland County Fairgrounds for this year's county fair. The Cleveland County Free Fair opens its 104th run Thursday and goes through Saturday. The fair features livestock shows, goat roping, carnival rides, baby crawls, tractor pulls and the celebrity cow-milking contest.
By Hannah Cruz
from: The Norman Transcript
September 5, 2012
Norman, Oaklahoma--In its 105th year, the Cleveland County Free Fair, running Thursday to Saturday, has a little bit of something for everyone and is host to a variety of events and activities, including live performances, carnival rides, exhibits, agricultural judging and more.

“It’s just to put on a fun fair for the community ... It’s family oriented, definitely. It’s not just for the kids anymore, it’s for everybody,” said Andrea Earles, Cleveland County Fairgrounds administrative assistant. “We have all ages that come out and enjoy it, whether it be they entered their things and got a prize or they’re coming out to enjoy the entertainment.”

When the fair began and through many of its formative years, the main attraction was agriculture and livestock, said Wanda Danley, Cleveland County Fairgrounds administrative secretary. The amount of submissions mirrored the active Norman farming community.

“We just used to have people bring exhibits up, enter them, they placed. We didn’t have a carnival. We didn’t have entertainment,” Danley said. “We just had the exhibits and livestock and things. It was a lot more agricultural then.”

Though the number of agriculture and livestock entries have dwindled over the years as the focus of Norman’s community shifts away from farming, Danley said the fair now is more inclusive of the community at large.

“It just gets a lot more people involved because you don’t have to be with a certain group. Before, you had to be in 4H, FFA or one of the extension homemaker groups before you could enter,” she said.

The fair still pays homage to its farming roots with plenty of agriculture and livestock entries and related activities like tractor parades and pulls, pony rides, goat roping and a petting zoo.

Over the years, the fair has evolved to include a variety of entertainment, but Earles said she still sees more room for growth, including corporate sponsors, bigger name performers and possible rodeo events.
read more:
http://normantranscript.com/headlines/x1884284817/105th-year-of-Cleveland-County-Free-Fair-set-to-begin-Thursday

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