Families and friends flocked to the front gates of the Herkimer County Fair as they started to open on the last of two Children’s Days on Thursday.
With prices for children ages 5 to 11 normally at $3, many took advantage of the opportunity of the Children’s Days which admitted children 11 years of age or younger for free. Other regular ticket prices are $7 for those older than age 11 and free for children younger than five years of age.
Utica residents Ana Paulino, Maki Castillo, Josh Castillo and Arianna Viggiano were among those attending the fair on Thursday and went on some rides, including the big slides.
“The kids come out to see the animals and they get to have fun riding on the rides,” said Jim Viggiano, who was with the group.
Adults, too, were having fun visiting the animals at the fair.
“I wanted to see the goats and the animal shows,” said Shelly Ford, of Ilion, who said she is currently raising three goats of her own.
Ford was at the fair with her husband, Dennis, and her children, Shelden, 10, and Cherea, 7.
“We do this every year,” said Ford. “It’s good for the kids to come out and get some air, and to teach them about this.”
Jasper Schorer, of Herkimer, said he was at the fair “for the little ones.”
“They like the music,” he said, as three-year-old Michael and four-year-old Alex danced to upbeat tunes while waiting for the start of the circus.
Friday’s schedule includes the open dairy show in the Livestock Arena, bingo from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., an agricultural scavenger hunt in the Youth Arena from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., two children’s pedal tractor pulls, the Idol Semifinals Karaoke at 5:30 p.m., the New York Tractor Pullers Association’s sanctioned pull with modified tractors and two-wheel drive trucks at 7 p.m. and a performance by modern country group the Carl Acoff, Jr. at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. at the American Homes Entertainment Complex.
Appearing daily at the fair are the Star Family Circus and Thrill Show, the Great Little Bear Show, the Melody Farm Review Show, “Whodunit Karaoke,” state police demonstrations and a smoke house with Sparky, the Milky Way’s Farm Adventure and Doodles the Talking Rooster and the Talking Hen.
There will be another ticket special on Friday where tickets will be offered at half price until 4 p.m. as part of Family/Senior Citizen Day at the fair.
For more information about the fair, go to www.herkimercountyfair.org.