HomePine Bluff newsPine Bluff gears up for the 84th annual Southeast Arkansas District Fair

Pine Bluff gears up for the 84th annual Southeast Arkansas District Fair

Pine Bluff, Arkansas – Pine Bluff is preparing for its 84th annual Southeast Arkansas District Fair, an event that draws attention to the region’s best in home economics and horticulture. Sponsored by notable organizations like Pine Bluff Advertising and Promotion, Planters Cotton Oil Mill, Walmart, and Farm Bureau, this year’s fair promises to be an engaging exhibit of local talent and hard work.

Taking place at Hestand Stadium Fairgrounds, located at 420 North Blake Street, the fair will begin on Wednesday, Sept. 27, with the acceptance of individual educational exhibits in both home economics and horticulture from 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. Residents from 17 Southeast Arkansas counties, spanning from Arkansas to Pulaski County, have the opportunity to display their exceptional talents.

The Home Economics Department is in line with the Arkansas State Fair standards, as articulated by Mary Ann Kizer, the Jefferson County Family and Consumer Sciences agent. She, along with Debbie James, ensures that the fair upholds the most rigorous guidelines for participation and competition. The department consists of various categories, such as Art, Baked Goods, Creative Stitchery & Sewing, Photography, and Woodworking.

For budding horticulturists, Dot Hart, the Horticulture Department Superintendent, and her assistants, Teki Hunt and Miriam Lester, have put together a compelling lineup. This encompasses divisions like Giant Pumpkin and Watermelon Contest, Ornamental Horticulture, Potted Ornamental Plants, and Fruits, Vegetables, and Nuts, among others. Participants from different age groups, including Youth (12 years and below), Junior (13 to 18 years), and Adult (19 years and up), can showcase their botanical prowess.

Aspiring photographers should heed Jo Ann Carr’s advice on entry specifications. Photos should be 8″ x 10″ in size, matted within an 11″ x 14″ framework. No frames or glass will be accepted, ensuring consistency in the presentation.

Those interested in baking and food preservation are also in for a treat. The Food Preparation category will include a taste test for quality, with cakes and cookies taking center stage. And for those with a knack for food preservation, only clear glass jars will be accepted, ensuring a fair and transparent judging process.

All entries will be subjected to a rigorous evaluation on Thursday, Sept. 28. Participants stand to gain not only recognition with blue, red, or white ribbons but also monetary rewards.

The fair offers more than just competitive exhibits. It will also feature engaging events like the Senior Citizens / Pre-School Day and Health Fair on Friday, Sept. 29. Activities include the Cockrill Petting Zoo, health screenings by JRMC Nursing students, and performances by the Diamond Line Dancers and David Rodgers.

A unique addition this year is the Sweet Potato Festival – Community Day at the Fair on Saturday, Sept. 30. Attendees can anticipate the Corvette Brothers’ performances, the Cockrill Petting Zoo, a Food Truck Challenge, the Sweet Potato Bake-Off Contest, and much more.

Horticulture Agent Timothy Wallace and FCS Agent Kizer invite all residents across the 17 counties to partake in the festivities of the 84th Annual Southeast Arkansas District Fair from Sept. 27 – 30. For those interested in entry forms or require additional information, the Jefferson County Extension Office at 500 S. Idaho Street in Pine Bluff stands ready to assist. Alternatively, they can be reached at (870) 534-1033 or via email at [email protected].

In essence, the 84th Southeast Arkansas District Fair is not just a competition but a celebration of the community’s spirit, talent, and shared passion for home economics and horticulture. It promises to be a memorable experience for all attendees and participants alike.

Nathan Kim

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