Rantin: People at the fair

brantin@thestate.com (803) 771-8306October 11, 2013 

  • At the fair The South Carolina State Fair continues through Oct. 20 at Rosewood Drive and George Rogers Boulevard in Columbia. Here are some important things to know about this year’s fair. General information

    Admission: $10 ages 6-54; $7 ages 55 and older; free for children 5 and younger. After 5 p.m., those younger than 16 must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian at least 21 years old. No admission after 10 p.m. daily.

    Parking: Free in the Fairgrounds parking lot.

    Daily gate promotion: Free admission for active and retired military and their dependents (with proper identification).

    Today’s highlights

    Hours: Gates open at 9 a.m. Midway opens at 10 a.m.

    Ride special: Two ride for the price of one from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

    Grandstand entertainment: Hunter Hayes, 7 p.m. $30

    Check it out

    The band Home Free recreates the entire band experience – with no instruments – as five vocalists perform hits from the past and present with a rich blend of harmonies. The group performs daily on the Netterfield Stage. See a video at thestate.com/fair.

  • More information

    Compiled by Bertram Rantin; follow him during the fair @bertramrantin on Twitter.

— There is every personality type to be found at the S.C. State Fair.

Some come solely for the thrill of the rides, others for a stroll through the exhibits, and others still to try their hand at one of many fair games. Then there are those who just like to sit back and take it all in.

We ventured onto the fairgrounds Friday to see how folks were Finding Their Happy at this year’s fair. Here’s a look at their stories. Maybe you’ll see a little of yourself.

The riders

Conner Frick, 9, has been making the annual trip to the State Fair from Savannah for the past five years. His first stop is the Midway, as he’s truly never met a ride he didn’t like. “My favorite is the ship that spins and is really quick,” Conner said. “But I just like them all.” The youngster came out with his father, cousin, aunt and a few friends and was still going strong after five hours of dips and dives.

The strollers

John David believes good things are to be savored. So the Aynor resident was taking his time as he strolled across the fairgrounds with his family. “I think you enjoy it more when you take your time,” he said, adding they were planning to make a full day of it. David recommends the Sky Glider as another relaxing way to check out the scenery and get a lay of the land before heading out on foot.

The gamers

It took four games and even a few more tries before Tamela Burgess finally claimed her first prize at the Whoopper Water game booth. But the Hopkins resident said the persistence was well worth the wait. “We’ve played a few,” she said of the spirited competitions she was having with her husband, John. “We’ve lost a few so far, but it’s all in the fun of playing.”

WATCH:

The eaters

Pizza and Fiske fries made for the perfect combination for Spartanburg’s Julie Delaney as she helped herself to lunch with her sister, mother and two daughters. “All my children love the rides but we come for the food,” Delaney said. “We plan our visits around lunch time so that we can come and eat.” And the best part about fair food, she said, is “everything is calories-free.”

The watchers

Charles Hodge was treating his eyes as he and his wife took a leisurely walk through several buildings to view the exhibits. “We’re enjoying the plants and the artwork and the livestock, particularly the chickens,” said the Blenheim resident, who also enjoys the colorful birds. For his part, Hodge likes the slower pace. “It’s important to take your time and try to enjoy it all.”

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