A fair column

Published 8:38 am Friday, August 7, 2009

Is there anything better than a county fair?

This week, I’m inclined to doubt it.

That’s because we have been working on the annual Franklin-Southampton County Fair special section, and it has managed to get me excited about Aug. 12-15 and the possibilities that await in Courtland.

Fair food. Rides. Games. Farm animals. Pickle judging. Queens and a talent show. Oh my!

And music. Let’s not forget about the music.

Legend has it that before an act can really hit the” big time,” they have to make a stop at the Franklin-Southampton County Fair first.

Just ask Lady Antebellum, the band that headlined last year’s fair. The Nashville-based country group was booked to play the fair and they apparently did a fine time entertaining the crowd. Last month, Lady Antebellum’s song “I Run to You” became a No. 1 single.

One fair planner likes to tell a funny story (No, I’m not naming names) about the year she had $1,000 to spend for all of the entertainment and told a booking agent that she would not be wasting her entire budget on some unknown country singer named Garth Brooks.

It didn’t take her long to regret that decision. Brooks shot up the charts and became one of the most successful country artists of all time. She told the booking agent that she would listen to his suggestions from then on.

Mr. Brooks (I’m sure you may have heard of him) didn’t do so bad without playing our little fair. Some people are just born lucky.

Others didn’t leave it to chance and got to Courtland as fast as their tour bus or airplane could get them here.

Not to name drop or anything, but Brad Paisley, Tracy Lawrence, Neal McCoy, Jason Aldean and Rodney Atkins have hit the main stage at the Franklin-Southampton County Fair.

Next Friday, The Lost Trailers will take the stage to entertain the masses. I’ve been listening to Lost Trailers music on the group’s Web site since Mrs. Didn’t Book Garth Brooks told me her story.

I can’t wait to say, “I saw them when they played our fair.”

On Sunday, we will insert that special section I mentioned in the paper. Check it out. It has the schedule and information about everything you’ll find at the Franklin-Southampton Fair.

There will plenty to do, see and hear at the fair and we will be sure to report on it, too.

Have fun — but not too much.

The Isle of Wight County Fair is next.