The theme for the 74th annual Pasco County Fair was “The Adventure Continues” — and, based on the sounds of laughter and the abundance of smiles seen across the fairgrounds, the event lived up to its name.
This year — in the time of COVID-19 — special safety precautions were taken.
There were signs all over the place, asking fair-goers to observe social distancing. Hand sanitizer stations were plentiful, and masks were required inside fair buildings.
The fair, which ran from Feb. 15 through Feb. 21, was held at the Pasco County Fairgrounds, 36722 State Road 52 in Dade City.
Thrill-seekers of all ages — who wanted to get their pulse racing — had lots of choices.
This year’s rides that were not for the faint of heart included: ‘Vertigo,’ a spinning swing ride that soared to heights of nearly 90 feet; ‘Rock Star,’ an exhilarating 360-degree spinning ride that lifts riders to nearly 60 feet; and the ‘Zipper,’ a classic ride in which riders are seated in caged carts that are flipped upside down – and spun all around – as they travel along an oblong, rotating frame.
There was a daily entertainment lineup, too, including acts that were new to the fair this year, such as the agriculture-themed, audience-interactive magic show from Richmond, Virginia, called, ‘Agricadabra;’ the aerial and ground stunt circus acts of the ‘Victoria Circus;’ the musical entertainment of Leon Jacobs Jr.; and, ‘The Wagsters,’ a magic and illusion show from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
Of course, there also were daily agricultural shows, competitions and exhibits.
A championship rodeo, sanctioned by the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA), was held on Feb. 19 and Feb. 20.
There also were various special events, including a Miss Heart of Florida pageant, a Pasco Showcase of Talent Show, and a Karaoke contest – where top winners were awarded cash prizes.
And, the aroma of fair foods filled the air — enticing patrons to stop to enjoy such treats as funnel cakes, deep-fried Oreos, hot dogs and cotton candy.
Those feeling lucky could step right up and try to win a prize for their favorite guy or gal, or maybe even for themselves. They could shoot hoops, play fishing games, toss rings on bottles, or play other games in the hopes of taking home a fair souvenir.
Perhaps the best prize of all, though, were the memories they made by spending some time at the 74th annual Pasco County Fair.
By Christine Holtzman
Published March 03, 2021