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TVA&I Fair rolls into Knox County Sept. 10

Celebrating 91 years of tradition, the Tennessee Valley Agricultural & Industrial Fair is a place where fairgoers of every age, from every walk of life come together to share stories of fairs gone by while creating new memories to share in the years to come.

The Fair offers something for everyone from agriculture and horticulture to culinary creations and oodles of activities and attractions for fairgoers that are young and young at heart. With more than nine decades of history, tradition and development, the Tennessee Valley Fair is one of the state’s premiere summer events and attractions that has family-friendly pricing.

The 2010 Tennessee Valley Fair will take place Friday, Sept. 10 through Sunday, Sept. 19, at Chilhowee Park in Knoxville.

Things have certainly changed since the very first Tennessee Valley Fair was held in 1916. The main idea behind the Fair then was to promote the improved methods of agriculture and raising livestock, and to display the improvement for labor, industry, education, arts and sciences. Up to 40,000 visitors passed through the gates to see the sights. One reporter wrote: “The lumbering of big freight wagons, cackle of the hens, mooing of the cows, and neighing of horses, intermingled with the symphony from two bands, made things hum and indicated that Knoxville’s great fair week will be all and even more than the most optimistic had hoped for.”

While much has changed with the Fair over the years, one thing has stayed consistent. The Fair is, and always has been, steeped in tradition and value. One of the longest running traditions of the Fair is providing an outstanding, memorable and most importantly, affordable experience for fairgoers.

Admission has remained incredibly reasonable, allowing fairgoers to enjoy activities and entertainment spanning 100 acres for $9 or less.

Great entertainment is another longstanding tradition at the Fair. Whatever format fairgoers fancy, they are bound to find it on the Tennessee Valley Fairgrounds.

This year’s lineup features performances by some of music’s recognizable figures including Uncle Kracker, The Band Perry, James Rogers, Candy Coburn, En Vogue, Con Hunley, Survivor, Luke Bryan and Charlie Daniels.

“The Fair is thrilled to showcase such a diverse line-up of artists,” said Scott Suchomski, executive director. “Each year we try to bring a wide range of acts to the Homer Hamilton Theatre to entertain fairgoers. This year’s lineup includes a wide range of talent, which is sure to have something for everyone.”

Agriculture is a very important industry in the state of Tennessee and is the core of the Tennessee Valley Fair.

The fun doesn’t stop with the animals! Fairgoers can take in beautiful, sculptured bonsais, orchids, dahlias, gladiolus, colorful cut flowers and a myriad of vegetables, plus textiles, canned goods, pies, cakes and more. It’s all located in the Kerr and Jacob Buildings, where attendees also can learn more about the impressive items on display during one of the many demonstrations related to the building’s theme.

Of course, the Tennessee Valley Fair would not be the same without the delicious food that everyone looks forward to each year. Each year, the Fair introduces a new food on a stick. In 2009, the Fair introduced Deep Fried Peanut Butter and Jelly. Visit the Fair Web site during the 10-day event to learn more about the new food for 2010.

Giggles and good times abound with the variety of activities and attractions to experience. With Kiddieland, youth exhibits, interactive activities, karaoke, a giant slide, and so much more, one day at the Fair is hardly enough.

All Fairs pride themselves on participation and the Tennessee Valley Fair offers an abundance of ways for fairgoers to do so. There are a variety of contests and of course, numerous exhibitors taking part in an array of shows and competitions.

Shoppers will enjoy a wide range of opportunities to indulge with hundreds of vendors located all over the Fairgrounds, including in the air-conditioned Jacob Building.

General admission tickets purchased at the gate are $9 for adults, $5 for youth (ages 6-11) and children 5 and under are free. Fairgoers with disabilities and senior citizens (65 and older) receive a discounted admission price of $7.

For details, visit or call 865-215-1470.


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