ROCHESTER - What is expected to be a new and welcome addition to the city's inaugural Granite State Fair is competitive barrel racing in which horse and rider navigate a cloverleaf pattern of preset barrels to determine who can complete the course in the fastest time.
"It's like a slalom course with horse and rider," noted the fair's executive director, CJ Dean.
Dean explained that while the midway and amusement rides stay, there will be a larger emphasis on the fair's agricultural roots.
One hopeful new addition to the barnyard animals exhibits will be a display of a calving.
"We're working right now on trying to find an animal that will be giving birth during the fair," he added. "We'd like to have a barnyard baby, a calf or two, but we'll also have lots of baby animals for kids to interact with."
He said they'll still have the wildly popular pig races and a return of horse pulling contests.
Dean said the name is being changed to the Granite State Fair to cast a wider net as a statewide event.
While it's still some two months away, Dean said online exhibit hall signups will begin on Aug. 1.
He said organizers and volunteers are already working hard getting things ready, and anyone who would like to volunteer is encouraged to email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 603-332-6585.
"We need help on the grounds right now," Dean noted. "There's lots of stuff has to be done."
The fair will run from Sept. 16-26, but will pause Sept. 20-22 (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday).