• 84°

Roller coaster, helicopter rides added to fair

If your idea of a good time is a roller coaster ride and or quick helicopter jaunt over Andalusia, then mark your calendar for the 48th annual Covington County Fair.

“We’ve got a couple of new things that I think will really draw the crowds in,” said Kiwanian Harry Hinson, speaking of the roller coaster and helicopter rides. “We’ve never done these before, but I know people will really enjoy it – which is the whole purpose of the fair.”

Also new on the schedule of events are two “Digging for Dough” events for children ages 3-4 and 5-6.

“We’ve got $100 in quarters that will be scattered under shavings for them to find,” Hinson said. “Kids love it, but the moms hate it when they come out, all that mess.”

Gates will open Monday at 5:30 p.m. and close at 10 p.m. Admission to the fair is $5 for those age 13 and older and $2 for those 6-12. Those under 6 are admitted free.

Inside the Kiwanis Building and Covington Center Arena, there will be exhibits of everything from prize-winning jellies, cookies and artwork to heifers, steers and pigs. Entry to view those exhibits is included in the admission price.

And as usual, the midway is packed tight with rides for all ages, Hinson said.

Unlimited ride armbands will be available nightly for $20 each; however, that price is reduced on Monday to $18 when presenting a receipt documenting any purchase on that day from a Covington County business.

A special time has been set-aside on Tuesday from 10 a.m. until noon for disabled residents. Tuesday is also family night at the fair, when admission is reduced to $4 for adults and $2 for children. To ride, one can purchase individual tickets or pay $15, and ride until closing.

Thursday is senior citizen night where those aged 65 or older can get in for $3.

Nightly entertainment will also be provided and includes Little and Tiny Miss Covington County Fair pageant on Monday and Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. and performances by Glorious Disaster on Wednesday at 6 p.m., talent shows on Thursday beginning at 6 p.m., and the LBWCC Ensemble in concert on Friday at 7 p.m. and Southland at 7 p.m. Saturday. On Sunday at 2 p.m., the Harrelson Family will be concert.

The fair will close at 6 p.m. Sunday.

Hinson said the first fair, which was held in 1963, netted the Andalusia Kiwanis Club $5,000. Since then, it has grown to allow the club to fund the construction and operation of the Kiwanis Building and numerous contributions to other local charitable organizations and schools.

“That’s why it’s so important that people come out and support the county fair,” he said. “That money they spend here benefits the entire community.”

Connor McDonald and James Mulkey carry a table to set up at the Kiwanis building Friday. | Stephanie Nelson/Star-News