158th Russell Fair opens today

File photo of vegetables displayed after judging at a local fair. The veggies and other homecrafts are available for public viewing at the Russell Fair, starting today at 4 p.m. Zandbergen photo, Nation Valley News

RUSSELL — The Russell Fair starts today (Sept. 8) with its traditional display of homecrafts in the Arena Exhibit Hall, which opens 4 p.m. to the public with the usual array of judged pies, vegetables, preserves and other entries demonstrating the best of domestic acumen.

Robertson Amusements’ Midway opens an hour later, kicking off the first evening of the 158th Russell Fair.

However, before the midway’s official 5 p.m. start today, registered special needs children and their parents have the opportunity to enjoy the place in a preview this afternoon, allowing them to enjoy the rides, petting zoo and Dr Kaboom and Mad Science shows without the lines and noise. There’s still time to register at reeannslater@gmail.com

Running through Sunday, Sept. 11, the fair features deep agricultural and animal husbandry roots typified by this evening’s Black and White Open Heifer Show (7 p.m. tonight), Friday’s St. Lawrence Valley Parish Jersey show (12:30 p.m.), and Saturday’s 4-H Achievement Day (10 a.m.).

Also returning to the ring are fall cutting horse competitions, Saturday (11 a.m.) and Sunday (9 a.m.).

And for an especially intriguing livestock competition, don’t forget Saturday’s frog races. The amphibians line up at 11 a.m.; registration takes place an hour earlier.

Featured live music acts this year include Diamond Heart (8 p.m. tonight at the refreshment patio) and three Friday night tribute bands on the arena stage — Great Scott, Absolute Journey, and Fleetwood Mac Mania. The refreshment patio will also see Sticks ‘n Stones (8:30 p.m., Saturday), and Phil Denault with special guests Louis Schryer and Nancy Denault  (1 – 7 p.m., Sunday).

And there’s plenty more to check out at the fair, from tonight’s truck pull competition to Saturday night’s demolition derby. See the full schedule here.

This article was edited to include the information about this afternoon’s opening for registered special needs children.

Paying homage to AC/DC, Great Scott — opening act at the Russell Fair’s Friday night arena show — appears below in video taken at the Chesterville Fair.


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