Fairs & Festivals

Fair fun gets going

PALMETTO -- Beginning at 9 a.m. today , 66 girls will begin arriving at Palmetto High School to get ready for the Manatee County Fair Pageant, which starts at 7:30 p.m.

“There’s a lot of anticipation,” pageant organizer Ellen Meade said Friday. “At orientation last week, we rehearsed their walk and how they are going to sit. We are looking for intelligent young ladies who can communicate well.”

The pageant features Mini Miss (ages 7 to 9), Little Miss (10 to 12), Junior Miss (13 to 15) and Miss (16 to 21).

Entertainment will be provided by former Miss Florida Dana Dalton Judge and the Lakewood Ranch Silver Stars dance team.

The pageant co-emcees are Vernon DeSear and 2010 “Miss” Queen Lauren Routh.

Tickets are $8 and can be bought at the door, at the Fair office or inside the Palmetto High auditorium all day today, Meade said.

The pageant always kicks off the Saturday before the start of fair week.

The fair this year is set for Thursday through Jan. 23.

On opening night Thursday, ticket prices will be discounted to $4 for age 13 and older, $2 for children 6-12, and free for children 5 and younger.

The fair opens at 5 p.m. Thursday.

For more information, don’t miss the Fair special section in Sunday’s Herald, and entertainment coverage in the Herald’s Weekend section on Thursday. Or visit www. manateecountyfair.com.

Richard Dymond, Herald reporter, can be contacted at 748-0411, ext. 6686.