SKOWHEGAN — Deafening engines revving up and roaring. Beat-up cars, monster trucks and motorcycles hurtling off ramps and rolling over. Helmeted stunt riders soaring through flames.

Those will be among the sights and sounds of the new headliner feature at this year’s Skowhegan State Fair, which opens Thursday at 7 a.m. and is expected to draw some 100,000 people over the course of its 10-day run through Saturday, Aug. 17. Marking its 201st year, organizers bill the event as the country’s oldest consecutively-running agricultural fair, which features rides, livestock shows, agricultural exhibits, antique cars, live music and harness racing.

A top attraction this year will be the return of a stunt show as a headliner event, according to Melvin Blaisdell, vice president of the Skowhegan Fair. The first “KSR Motorsports Auto Thrill Show” will be at 7 p.m. on opening day, Thursday, also known as “Dollar Day” because of the $1 admission price. The stunt show will also be at 3 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and at 7 p.m. on Sunday.

“It should be a big draw,” Blaisdell said Tuesday, as crews worked to finish setting up the fairgrounds ahead of standard state inspections on Wednesday. “We haven’t had stunt drivers at the fair for maybe six or seven years.”

Jack Brady, owner of Philadelphia-based KSR Motorsports, said the auto thrill show will feature a nice mix of stunts, monster trucks, Freestyle motocross, or FMX, “a variation of everything we have.”

“It’s a lot of crashin’, motorcycle stunts, monster trucks, just about everything,” Brady said by phone Tuesday. “We’ll also have ‘Doug Danger.’ He’s the world record motorcycle jumper doing firewalls.”


In addition to KSR Motorsports Auto Thrill Show, Thursday’s opening day will also feature events such as a 4-H horse show at 9 a.m.; tractor-pulls at 1 and 6:30 p.m.; and classic rock and country band Misty River performing at 7 p.m. Daily, grounds open at 7 a.m., the midway opens at 1 p.m. and buildings are open from noon to 10 p.m.

The fairgrounds is off U.S. Route 201, also known as Madison Avenue, just north of downtown. For a full fair schedule, visit

Admission is a special $1 per person on opening day, Thursday; $10 on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays; and $8 on all other days. Children age 10 and under are admitted for free.

All-day ride bracelets run $12 on Thursday; $17 on Saturdays; and $15 on all other days.

Blaisdell said fair organizers are watching the weather, which is forecast to be a bit unsettled for the start of the fair — there are chances of rain storms Wednesday through Friday — but the outlook looks mostly sunny and warm after that.

Even so, Blaisdell said he’s still expecting some 100,000 fairgoers — a number he says has been pretty consistent over the last three years.

His parting message to fairgoers?

“Just come early, stay late and have fun,” Blaisdell said.

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