The 86th annual Lake County Fair will offer five days of entertainment beginning Wednesday, July 23, through Sunday, July 27, at the Lake County Fairgrounds, 1060 E. Peterson Road, Grayslake.
General hours are 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday; 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday; and 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday.
"The All-American Fair" is the theme this year with a range of traditional attractions and new features, such as professional lawn mower racing.
With several new elements and returning crowd pleasers, fairgoers can listen to live music or watch a magic act; stop and say hello to farm animals in each of the four livestock barns; and enjoy carnival rides, games, food, blue-ribbon competitions, bingo and shopping.
Popular events include a livestock auction, competitive exhibits, queen pageants, pro motocross, Banana Derby races and a demolition derby.
Gates open daily at 8 a.m. for livestock events. Goat, swine, dairy/beef and sheep barn schedules may vary. The Expo Center is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday; and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.
The Chicago Flower & Garden Show at the Lake County Fair will be from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. The midway will be open at noon daily.
Among the information booths at the fair will be one from the U.S. Army's Round Lake Beach recruiting center. It will feature a vehicle with video games and DVD media showing clips of basic training and jobs the military offers, as well as a raffle and various giveaways of T-shirts and other items.
There will also be games such as a football toss and cornhole toss, and a chance for fairgoers to test their agility.
Adult tickets are $8 Wednesday through Friday and $10 on the weekend. Tickets for children ages 6 to 12, seniors 65 and older and veterans out of uniform (with identification) are $5 daily. Children ages 5 and younger, veterans and active military in uniform are free. Season passes, family packs and group passes also are available.
Visit lcfair.com for complete information or check www.facebook.com/lcfairillinois; email firstname.lastname@example.org; or call (847) 680-7200.
There are several new features this year.
Thursday has been designated Veterans Day at the fair and all veterans and active military will be admitted free. And, for the first time in decades, a fireworks show will be at about 10 p.m. after the concerts.
After a two-year absence, the rodeo returns to the fair with the Lake County Fair Pro Rodeo Stampede at 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday.
On Saturday at 1 and 7 p.m., visitors can root for their favorites during the "Mow Down Show Down" professional lawn mower racing competition, and from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. is the Lake County Mounted Posse Open Horse Show.
On Sunday, up to 25 craft beer vendors will offer samples from 1 to 5 p.m. Advance tickets, including fair admission, are available, as are walk up tickets. At noon, a new promoter for the demolition derby promises ramped up excitement. Visit UltimateDerby.com.
On the Main Stage, Wednesday is the Lake County Fair Queens Pageant; Thursday is Naval Station Great Lakes Band "Horizon," Elizabeth Lyons, and Gunnar & the Grizzly Boys; Friday is Mandy Z & Rural Route One and Bella Cain; Saturday is Transformation and The Blooze Brothers.
All-you-can-ride wristbands are good for unlimited spins on all Midway rides available from noon to 9 p.m. Wednesday for $30 or noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday to Friday for $17.
On weekends, bus shuttles will operate regularly between the fairgrounds and the Prairie Crossing Metra Station, 3001 W. Midlothian Road, Libertyville. Both the Metra Milwaukee District North and North Central Service rail lines stop at Prairie Crossing, which is less than one-half mile north of the fairgrounds.
For schedules and information about stops along these train routes, visit metrarail.com.