September in Fort Bend County is Fair Time.
This year the tradition of the Fort Bend County Fair and Rodeo will celebrate 80 years of family fun. Grab your hat, dust off your boots, and head out for good music, great food and a grand time at the fair. The 80th Annual Fort Bend County Fair and Rodeo will run from Sept. 23 to Oct. 2 at the Fort Bend County Fairgrounds.
The fair’s 10-day run for some families is more than an event, it is a tradition, passed on from generation to generation.
“I showed animals here growing up, all of my kids have shown animals here, and they have participated in Fair activities, like many other generations of families have done,” said 2016 Fort Bend County Fair President, Neil O. Yelderman. “My entire life my mom and dad took me to the Fair at the old fairgrounds on Ave H as a child – as a youngster, the week the Fair was in town was right up there with Christmas and my birthday for me.”
The 2016 entertainment lineup goes deep with talent and has something for everyone to enjoy.
“It is a true mix of musical artists that represent a wide range of music. From hot new country headliners to iconic legends, our lineup is jammed with entertainment,” said Cindy Schmidt, Fort Bend County Interim Fair Manager. “Our Fair works hard to bring the best for our fairgoers.”
In 1984, the fair’s entertainer lineup included George Strait, who was and is still one of the hottest acts in country music.
“The Fort Bend County Fair has played an important role in the community, not just as an event that brings families and friends together every year, but also in its mission to support education programs and help kids in Texas achieve their dreams,” Strait said this about the fair. “Congratulations to the fair on its 80th anniversary!”
The fair will kick off with Red Dirt music mainstay, Stoney Larue. Larue is known for his high-energy live shows and has a huge fan base following. William Michael Morgan will headline on Sept. 24. On Sunday, the fair will celebrate Go Tejano Day with several acts leading up to the Bobby Pulido’s evening concert. Returning to the fair on Wednesday, Sept. 28, will be the hip-shaking Shinyribs. Shinyribs’ unique onstage presence will keep the crowd entertained and rocking.
The Texas Tornado, Tanya Tucker will take the stage on Friday, Sept. 30. Over the course of her career, Tucker has produced 23 Top 40 albums and 56 Top 40 singles, out of which 10 have reached No. 1 on the Billboard charts. Her best-known songs include “Delta Dawn” and “San Antonio Stroll”.
Country music’s talented heartthrob, Glen Templeton, returns on Saturday night Oct. 1 and said, “I am looking forward to coming back and putting on a great show.” To wrap up the Fair, the iconic Johnny Lee will be singing the songs we all know and love.
Pleasing your palate will not be hard with the fair’s food selection. Funnel cakes, turkey legs, hand-dipped corn dogs, and even tamales will be on the menu for all fair-goers to enjoy. Wine aficionados will be able to swirl their glasses to an assortment of selected wines in the Grapes on the Brazos wine room. The popular wine venue welcomes the novice wine lover to hone their wine tasting skills in a relaxed, no-pressure atmosphere.
There will be plenty of action for the thrill seeking fans at the fair. Rodeo action will pack the newly renovated O.D. Tucker arena. The added stadium seating and side action rough stock chutes will make their debut. The crowd favorite, Mutton Bustin, will keep you cheering on the little cowboys and cowgirls. A high-flying motorcycle specialty act during the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association (PRCA) rodeo nights will return and is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
The livestock arenas will have Grand Champion moments. FFA and 4H kids with their livestock projects will be competing in their individual classes. These students range from high school seniors who will be showing their livestock projects for the last time to younger kids getting their first Fair experience under their belt. The memories made in the show arenas will last a lifetime.
The 2016 Fort Bend County Fair Association awarded 42 scholarships and five Queen scholarships, totaling over $150,000 to youth representing high schools from all over the county. Through the Junior livestock auction, art auction, commercial heifer auction, and freezer sale our fair is committed to helping our youth achieve their educational goals. Yelderman continues to look for ways to grow the auctions and be able to give back and said, “It is our investment in the future and in my opinion it is why we do what we do.”
Fair day is Friday, Sept. 23, and the parade will kick things off at 9 a.m. Visit www.fortbendcountyfair.com for a full schedule of events or ticket information.