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Lewis County Fair contest to determine this year’s theme

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LOWVILLE — The theme of the 2014 Lewis County Fair will be ... possibly up to you.

Rather than brainstorm about a theme for this year’s fair, as they usually do, fair organizers have instead decided to hold a contest to determine the theme; the winner will earn a pair of grandstand passes for the entire week’s worth of events.

“It becomes harder and harder to come up with ideas,” said Susan M. Berrus, secretary of the Lewis County Agricultural Society, which operates the fairgrounds and organizes the annual county fair. “I thought, ‘Why not get everybody involved?’”

Mrs. Berrus said fair directors adopted the idea from the New York State Fair, which held a similar contest last year.

“We’ll see if we get any response,” she said.

The theme is typically a few words in length and will be used as the theme for the fair — which will celebrate its 194th year when it returns July 15 to 19 — and its Tuesday parade.

The past few years’ themes have been “Lewis County’s Great Coming Together” in 2011, “Lewis County Fun-The Best is Yet to Come” in 2012 and “Food, Fun & Family at the Fair” in 2013.

Entries will be accepted through March 3 by mail to the Lewis County Fair, P.O. Box 51, Lowville, N.Y., 13367 or by email at lewiscountyfairny@gmail.com.

Participants are asked to include their names and telephone numbers with each entry.

The winning entry will be chosen by Agricultural Society board members.

The recently-signed music headliner at this year’s Lewis County Fair will be country singer Jon Pardi.

“He’s really up and coming,” Mrs. Berrus said.

The California native in April 2012 released his debut single, “Missin’ You Crazy,” while his second single, “Up All Night,” was released in April 2013 and became his first top ten hit.

His debut album, “Write You a Song,” came out in January.

“A natural storyteller, he writes what he knows, spinning tales born of his dues-paying days in the area around his native Dixon, California, and bringing it all together into a strong, cohesive musical statement,” states a biography on Mr. Pardi’s website, www.jonpardi.com. “Between the heartfelt opener ‘Fightin’ the Fool’ and the breakneck rocker ‘Drinkin’ With Me,’ which closes the CD, he lays out a scenario of youth, music, love and loss that is as compelling as it is raucous. ‘Chasin’ Them Better Days’ and ‘Write You A Song’ capture all the adventure and uncertainty of life on the road; ‘Happens All The Time’ brings attraction, flirtation and love’s possibilities, good and bad, to the table; from there, ‘Up All Night’ celebrates love, ‘Missin’ You Crazy’ showcases the yin-yang pull of relationships and the road, ‘Love You From Here’ is a surprisingly upbeat farewell to a departed love, and ‘Empty Beer Cans’ and ‘Rainy Night Song’ show both sides of the coin when it comes to heartache.”

A pair of popular acts from past years — Rosaire’s Royal Racing Pigs and Sylvia Fletcher, the Comedy Ventriloquist, with her Magic Trunk — are also slated to return and provide free entertainment throughout the five-day fair.

And regular events like the truck and tractor pulls and the demolition will be back.

The fair will continue to offer free admission to the grounds.

There will be a charge for grandstand entertainment Wednesday evening through Saturday and for on-grounds parking.

For more information about the Lewis County Fair, visit its website at www.lewiscountyfair.org and follow the fair’s Facebook page.

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