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From pies to pigs

The county fair wraps up this weekend with monster truck racing, a demolition derby - and, of course, much food and music.

By LOGAN NEILL
Published April 22, 2005


BROOKSVILLE - Visitors can expect a lot of bang and a good beat for their bucks as the Hernando County Fair and Youth Livestock Show winds toward its conclusion this weekend.

The fair already has outpaced itself with record attendance during most of the first week, and Hernando County Fair Association president Deb Pedone expects more of the same today through Sunday.

"We're looking forward to a very successful weekend," Pedone said. "I think people will be able to find something entertaining to see and do no matter what their interest is."

The popular spectator sport known as monster truck racing makes its fair debut at 8 p.m. today in the rodeo arena. About a half-dozen of the balloon-tired behemoths are expected to compete in a show that features jumps, spins and side-by-side racing. Admission to the event is $15 and includes fair admission.

On Saturday, the monster trucks return for another program at 1 p.m. Later, it's the return of the popular demolition derby feature. This year's event will pit about 25 local drivers in an all-out fight to the finish. The derby gets under way at 8 p.m., and admission is $12 for adults and $5 children 4 to 12.

If it's music you are after, then Sunday's your day at the fair.

Southern rock legends the Marshall Tucker Band will perform along with Led Zeppelin tribute band ZOSO, plus Gray Beards and Divas. The concert gets under way at 2 p.m. Admission is $15 and includes fair admission.

Here's the complete weekend fair schedule: TODAY

5 p.m.-midnight Midway open (unlimited ride armbands $15)

5-8:30 p.m. Baby farm animal barn open

6 p.m. Ice cream sundae eating contest

7 p.m. Youth Battle of the Bands (auditorium)

8 p.m. Monster truck show ($15 admission includes fair admission)

All day Show Me Racing Pigs

SATURDAY

Noon-midnight Midway open (unlimited ride armbands $10 from noon to 5 p.m. and $15 from 6 p.m. to midnight)

Noon-8:30 p.m. Baby farm animal barn open

1 p.m. Monster truck show ($15 admission includes fair admission)

Noon-3 p.m. Livestock buyers lunch

2 p.m. Ice cream eating contest

3 p.m. Livestock sale (livestock arena)

3:30 p.m. Spaghetti eating contest (in front of auditorium)

4-5 p.m. Canine search and rescue demonstration (rodeo arena)

8 p.m. Second annual demolition derby ($12 adults and $5 children 4-12; under 3, free. Includes fair admission. Monster truck/demo derby two-pack $22 for adults and $15 for children. Advance tickets available at fair office.)

All day Show Me Racing Pigs

SUNDAY

11 a.m. Animal load-out

Noon-8 p.m. Midway open (unlimited ride armbands $10)

Noon-8 p.m. Baby farm animal barn open

12:30 p.m. Tall Grass acoustic duo (independent midway stage)

1:30 p.m. Old-fashioned pie eating contest

2 p.m. Marshall Tucker Band with Led Zeppelin tribute band ZOSO, plus the Gray Beards and Diva ($15 admission includes fair admission)

2 p.m. Ice cream eating contest

All day Show Me Racing Pigs

IF YOU GO

WHAT: "Somethin' to Talk About" 2005 Hernando County Fair and Youth Livestock Show

WHEN: Daily through Sunday.

WHERE: Hernando County Fairgrounds, U.S. 41 on the south side of Brooksville. Enter on Oliver Street from U.S. 41 and park on the north side of the grounds. Once those spots are filled, patrons will park in a vacant lot across U.S. 41, and sheriff's deputies will provide escorts across the highway.

ADMISSION: $5 for adults and $3 for ages 4-12; free for 3 and under. Parking $1 per car every day. Admission for special events, which includes admission to the fairgrounds, listed in events schedule.

INFORMATION: Call the fair office at 796-4552 or visit the fair's Web site at www.hernandocountyfair.com