Archive for August, 2012

Weekend Update: Aug. 31-Sept. 3

August 31, 2012 By: Bearded Lady Category: N.C. State Fairgrounds

How will you celebrate your Labor Day weekend? How about with a trip to the N.C. State Fairgrounds? From horse and dog shows to exotic animals and precious gems, we’ve got something for the entire family this weekend. Read on for more details.

Carolina Rollergirls will take to the track Saturday, Sept. 1.

Equestrian Exchange Consignment Sale
The Equestrian Exchange Tack Consignment Sale in the Holshouser Building offers the opportunity to buy and consign equestrian items, saddles and tack for all disciplines of riding. The event is open to the public Friday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Monday from noon to 6 p.m. Admission is free.

NCDCTA Sport Horse Breeding Show
On Friday, the N.C. Dressage and Combined Training Association will hold a dressage sport horse breeding competition at the Hunt Horse Complex. Horses will be shown in hand and under saddle. Saturday and Sunday, the organization will host the Labor of Love Horse Show, which is open to all levels of dressage competition. Shows run daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free.

Tarheel Labor Day Cluster
Dozens of dogs will compete in the Tarheel Labor Day Cluster. The event, which will be held in the Graham Building, includes dog obedience trials and other competitions leading up to the championship show.  A different Kennel Club will host competitions each day. Friday’s events are hosted by the Alamance Kennel Club; Saturday by the Durham Kennel Club; Sunday by the Raleigh Kennel Club and Monday by the Cary Kennel Club. Shows run from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Admission for Saturday, Sunday and Monday is $5 for adults. Admission is $2 for seniors and children ages 7-11. Admission is free with military ID and for children under 7.

Treasures of the Earth Gem, Mineral & Jewelry Show
In the Scott Building, visitors will be able to purchase jewelry, gems and more at the Treasures of the Earth show. Jewelers will be on site to repair, design or set stones and wire wrappers. The show is open Friday from noon to 7 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Monday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $4 for adults and free for children under 16.

Carolina Roller Derby
The Carolina Rollergirls will bring back their brand of fierce competition with a double-header event Saturday in Dorton Arena. Games will be held at 3 and 5 p.m., doors open at 2:30. Admission is $14 for adults, $8 for students and seniors 65 and older and $7 for children. Kids under six are admitted for free, but only 2 per adult. Advance tickets and group discounts are available online at

The Carolina Reptile & Exotic Animal Show
National breeders and manufacturers will be on hand in the Expo Center selling reptiles, birds and mammals along with cages, food and supplies. The event also features live animal shows and seminars on animal breeding and care. Doors are open Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $9 for adults and $6 for seniors and children ages 5-12. Admission is free for kids under 5.

Raleigh Flea Market
You only have four weekends left to visit the Raleigh Flea Market before the State Fair. Come out and enjoy the offerings from hundreds of vendors. The flea market is open Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

And, don’t forget to mark your calendars for these other great events:

Sept. 7-8: The Original Coin & Currency Show, N.C. Dealers Association Fall RV Sale
Sept. 14-16: Greek Festival, Old North State Antique Gun & Military Collector Show, Mexican Independence Day Celebration
Sept. 21-23: Southern Ideal Home Show, Chinese Moon Festival Celebration
Sept. 24: Fairgrounds Closes for N.C. State Fair
Oct. 11-21: 2012 N.C. State Fair
Nov. 1: Fairgrounds Reopens





Artist Spotlight: Jason Michael Carroll

August 30, 2012 By: Honey Bee Category: 2012 N.C. State Fair

Jason Michael Carroll plays Dorton Arena Wednesday, Oct. 17.

Scotty McCreery won’t be the only North Carolina native performing in Dorton Arena’s concert lineup at the N.C. State Fair. Youngsville’s own country star, Jason Michael Carroll, will be making an appearance as well. In 2007, Carroll released his first album and shot up the charts with singles “Alyssa Lies” and “Livin’ Our Love Song.” His second album, released in 2008, featured “Hurry Home” and “Where I’m From.” Carroll’s most recent hit, “Numbers,” is the title track of his newest album, which was released just last year.

While “Numbers” includes almost every element of a stereotypical country song—football, America, a farm, a pretty girl and a pickup truck, just to name a few—Carroll’s storytelling is anything but stereotypical. The song’s lyrics point out how oftentimes numbers seem insignificant and are ignored; however, they play a bigger part in our lives than we realize.

“Numbers all around, flying by, ups and downs,
Some as slow as Christmas coming, some like the speed of sound,
And we all wonder, what they mean,
The highs, the lows, the in betweens,
Most of them mean absolutely nothing
But some of them mean everything”

Don’t miss your chance to see Jason Michael Carroll close to home. Tickets to the Oct. 17 show at the N.C. State Fair are still available. It begins at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at


Weekend Update: Aug. 24-26

August 24, 2012 By: Bearded Lady Category: N.C. State Fairgrounds

There are a lot of fun things happening at the fairgrounds this weekend. Check out our list below to find out more about the upcoming events.

Stop by the fairgrounds for the Raleigh Flea Market and other fun events.

Raleigh Flea Market
Hundreds of vendors, selling everything from clothes to cabinets, set up at the Raleigh Flea Market each week. It’s a great place to bring your family and explore. The flea market is open Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Check out this awesome News & Observer photo gallery from last weekend about the cast of characters you’ll find at the market.

NCHJA ” C” Indoors Horse Show
Triangle Farms presents another hunter horse show at the Hunt Horse Complex.  These shows are NCHJA “C” rated shows and most of the competitors will be from North Carolina. Shows start at 8 a.m. Friday to Sunday. Admission is free for spectators.

8th Annual Children’s Good News Spectacular
Child Evangelism Fellowship of Greater Raleigh Area will host a family-friendly event Saturday in the Graham Building. Children can enjoy inflatable games and rides, food and other entertainment. The event is open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission is free.

Body Mind Spirit Expo
The Scott Building will host a holistic living expo Saturday and Sunday. The show features health, wellness and metaphysical booths, as well as educational lectures. The Body Mind Spirit Expo is open Saturday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission for both days is $12 for adults. Admission is free for children under 10.

That’s what’s going on this weekend. Remember, the N.C. State Fair is just seven weeks away. Admission, ride and concert tickets are now available online at Buying in advance can save you a lot of money, especially if you love the carnival rides. For example, a sheet of 18 ride tickets is $18 at the fair, but you can get one for $10 if you buy in advance. Plus, if you spend just $40, you can earn a free admission ticket through the Early Bird Special.

Artist Spotlight: Hot Chelle Rae

August 23, 2012 By: Firecracker Category: 2012 N.C. State Fair

You may not think that you know the band Hot Chelle Rae, but if you like pop music, you’ve likely crossed paths with their first platinum hit, “Tonight, Tonight.” Still not sounding familiar? How about “Tonight, tonight / We’re gonna party on the rooftop, top of the world?” See. Told ya. You couldn’t listen to a Top-40 music station last year without hearing this crowd-pleasing song. (Or getting the catchy chorus stuck in your head, right?)

Hot Chelle Rae performs in Dorton Arena on Sunday, Oct. 14

It would be easy to lump these guys into the boy band category, but they have earned acclaim and fans for their music. They’ve toured with Taylor Swift and Demi Lavato, their second single, “I Like it Like That,” also went platinum and they took home the American Music Awards’ Best New Artist of the Year award in 2011.

And not only do they write their own songs and music, they each have a serious musical pedigree steeped in their hometown of Nashville, Tenn. Ryan and Jamie are the sons of A-List Nashville songwriters Keith and Adrienne Follese; Nash is the son of five-time songwriter of the year, Paul Overstreet (and brother of Chord Overstreet, my favorite actor on GLEE, who cameos on the “Tonight, Tonight” video); and Ian’s dad is Grammy-nominated guitarist and singer, Phil Keaggy.

HCR random trivia: According to one online interview, the group’s name is from a “crazy fan and a random set of words.” They say they took the name of a girl posing as an “online model with ‘music business connections,’” and added the adjective “hot” before it to come up with the band’s name. If you have trouble remembering their name, just remember Honeybee’s advice and think of the beach.

Hot Chelle Rae performs in Dorton Arena on Sunday, Oct. 14, and great seats are still available. Tickets are only $15, and are available here.

Check out “Tonight, Tonight” (and Glee fans, look for Trouty Mouth).


50 days away

August 22, 2012 By: Bearded Lady Category: 2012 N.C. State Fair

The 2012 N.C. State Fair starts in 50 days. Are you excited yet?

In case you’ve been competing in the Olympics, cheating on your co-star or watching continuous coverage of sharks, and haven’t heard we’re just 50 days away from the 2012 N.C. State Fair. We’re so close you can almost smell the cotton candy and turkey legs.

A few years back, we compiled a list of the top 100 experiences at the N.C. State Fair. The list included all our favorites and not-to-be-missed attractions. This year, we turned to our awesome fans on Facebook to see what they love about the fair. Here’s what they came up with. Do you see your favorite part of the fair?

50 Reasons Why the N.C. State Fair is a Bumper Crop of Fun (in no particular order)

  1. Roasted Corn – Tina Bennett
  2. Honey Sticks – Kelly Allen Young
  3. Dancing – Kennedy Olivia Fowle
  4. Wisconsin Cheese – Patti Herold Mitchell
  5. “Walking around in the fresh air eating chocolate covered marshmallows.” – Joy A. Goode
  6. Tractor Pull – Stephanie Kenner Hairr
  7. Horse Show – JayKim Foushee
  8. People Watching – Yvette Deanne
  9. Maple Cotton Candy – Whitney Corn
  10. “All the free stuff you receive from all the booths” – Kayla Snell
  11. Pig Races – Lynne Poindexter
  12. Fireworks – Mary Jane Wiethe
  13. Chocolate Covered Peanuts – Lori Crabtree
  14. N.C. Honey – Mary Krabacher
  15. “The food. The noise. The smells. The animals. What’s not to like?” – Pamela King Waggoner
  16. Fudge – Buddy Warden
  17. Carnival Games – Malcolm McGregor
  18. Frozen Cheesecake on a Stick – Jimmy Dean
  19. Tobacco Tying Contest – Amy Hinson
  20. “Definitely eating food by the firepit while listening to bluegrass music” – Chase Parrish
  21. The Smell -Rachel French
  22. The Last Day – James Maguire
  23. The Atmosphere – Rod Jones
  24. Cake Competition – Jen Frazier
  25. “I would say the rides, the water gun games and the time I get to spend with Clive A Bernard!!!” – Abby L Jensen
  26. Livestock Shows – Donna Rose Lamm
  27. Baby Chicks – Rebecca DiSandro
  28. Apple Cider – Jen Frazier
  29. Village of Yesteryear – Nancy Armisto
  30. Cows – Robert Ligon
  31. Flower and Garden Show – Amber Smith Wallace
  32. Rajun Cajun Food – Chris Wrenn
  33. Mini donuts – Amy Reynolds
  34. Barefoot Footlong Hot Dog – Ellen Hale Pace
  35. “The food. The animals. I just love the fair!” – Chris Hester
  36. Al’s Fries – Daniel Clowers
  37. N.C. State Ice Cream Booth – Cindy Block
  38. Riding the Tram – Terri Carroll
  39. Landscape Competition – Kermit Hines
  40. Maple Cotton Candy – Amy Chapin
  41. “Fireworks, decorated cakes, honey cotton candy and being with my boyfriend enjoying our oh so southern roots together!” – Marcia Sawyer Danchise
  42. Ham Biscuits at the Cary Methodist Booth – Vicki Joyner Thompson
  43. Corn on the Cob – Debbie Webb
  44. Going with my kids – Mary Frazier
  45. Free Hushpuppies – Alyson Scoltock
  46. Chicken tent – David Bissette
  47. Everything – Mudhafar Alfatlawi
  48. Scotty McCreery Concert – Rebecca DiSandro
  49. Lights at Night – Jen Frazier
  50. Elephant Ears – Yvette Deanne

What’s missing? Leave a comment below and let us know.

Start planning your trip to the 2012 N.C. State Fair. Advance tickets are on sale now at Take advantage of the Early Bird Special and earn up to three free gate admission tickets. And, don’t forget to stay connected with the fair on Facebook and Twitter.

Weekend Update: Aug. 17-19

August 17, 2012 By: Bearded Lady Category: 2012 N.C. State Fair, N.C. State Fairgrounds

The Carolina Fall Boat Show and Sale will be held in the Graham Building this weekend.

Mark your calendars because we are just under eight weeks away from the 2012 N.C. State Fair. If you haven’t already, you can purchase your gate admission, ride and concert tickets online at By purchasing in advance, you’ll avoid lines at the fair, secure your favorite seat for concerts in Dorton Arena and can earn up to three free gate admission tickets with the Early Bird Special.

In the meantime, it’s going to be another great weekend at the fairgrounds. The big event this weekend is the Carolina Fall Boat Show and Sale in the Graham Building. If you’re in the market for a boat, drop by and take advantage of summer clearance prices from more than 25 dealers. The show is open Friday from noon to 8 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $6 for adults and free for children under 13.

And don’t forget about the Raleigh Flea Market. The market is open Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and features more than 100 vendors. From rubber chickens to rubber bands, you never know what you’ll find.

Artist Spotlight: Jake Owen

August 16, 2012 By: Honey Bee Category: 2012 N.C. State Fair

Jake Owen plays Dorton Arena Saturday, Oct. 13.

Country artist Jake Owen will be performing at the N.C. State Fair on Saturday, Oct. 13.  Owen, who entered the country music scene in 2006, quickly made a name for himself with hits such as “Barefoot Blue Jean Night,” “Alone With You” and “Don’t Think I Can’t Love You.”

The Florida native, like so many other singers, moved to Nashville with a guitar and a dream. But unlike many others, he was almost an immediate success. Within months of moving to Nashville, Jake had landed a contract.

He recorded his first album, “Startin’ with Me,” and quickly followed it up with his second album, “Easy Does It.” In 2011, he released his third album, entitled “Barefoot Blue Jean Night.” It included two singles that have made it to No. 1 on the country charts.

One of those songs is the title track, and it is one of my favorites. Perhaps the reason that Owen’s song particularly stuck out to me was that it almost perfectly describes my summers at home.

The song starts out, “A full moon shinin’ bright, edge of the water; we were feelin’ alright…”

One of my favorite summertime activities is going to my best friend’s lake house. We spend the day soaking up the sun, swimming, tubing and just riding around on the boat.

Right around dusk, we pile in the boat and head out on a sunset boat ride. It is truly awe-inspiring. I love watching the vibrant pinks, oranges and purples melt away into inky darkness.  Then, the stars come out and the moon rises, creating the perfect backdrop for our very own “Southern, summer barefoot blue jean night.”

The boys normally try to build the biggest bonfire they possibly can, while the girls sit around the fire and talk. Once the guys are satisfied (or give up) with their fire, we all sit around the fire laughing, telling stories and sharing dreams. Eventually, we all just get quiet. We listen to the water gently lapping against the shore, the bugs singing in the night air and the fire quietly snapping and popping as it dies down. It’s a time to reflect on life, on happiness, on friendship—on the things that truly matter. It’s just like Owen says, “We were comin’ alive, Yeah! Caught up in a Southern summer, barefoot, blue jean night.”

Great tickets are still available for the Oct. 13 show. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at All Dorton Arena concerts start at 7:30 p.m.


Show us your Bumper Crop of Fun

August 15, 2012 By: Bearded Lady Category: 2012 N.C. State Fair

Around here, we’re pretty big fans of The Peterson Farm Bros YouTube sensation,”I’m Farming and I Grow It.” If you haven’t seen this Internet phenom, check out the video below:

The video has more than 6 million views on YouTube and has inspired an array of other farming parody videos, including Lil Fred’s “Farm It Maybe.” With all of the creativity across the country, we knew there had to be just as many creative people right here in North Carolina. That’s why we created the Bumper Crop of Fun Video Contest. Here’s how it works:

  • Create a music video that features some aspect of agriculture, farming or the State Fair.
  • The video has to include this year’s State Fair theme “Bumper Crop of Fun.”
  • Upload your video to YouTube or another video-sharing site.
  • Send a link for your video to with your name, mailing address and phone number.
  • All entries are due by 5 p.m. on Aug. 31.
  • We’ll announce a winner Tuesday, Sept. 4. The winner will receive a State Fair prize pack and the winning entry will be featured on the N.C. State Fair website through the end of the fair.

So, what are you waiting for? Get a group of friends together, grab a camera and visit a farm, farmers market or the fairgrounds. We can’t wait to see your video. And, who knows, you might be the next Internet sensation.

Weekend Update: August 10-12

August 10, 2012 By: Bearded Lady Category: N.C. State Fairgrounds

First comes love. Then comes marriage. Then comes a baby in a baby carriage. No matter what stage of life you are in, there’s something for you this weekend at the N.C. State Fairgrounds.

Love, marriage or children? We've got you covered this weekend at the N.C. State Fairgrounds.

Whether it’s puppy love or the real deal, there’s nothing quite like spending time strolling through the Raleigh Flea Market with your special someone. You can spend a few minutes or a few hours browsing the vendor booths. The market is open Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

If you’re preparing for a stroll down the aisle in the near future, then you need to stop by the Southern Bridal Show and Expo in the Graham Building. More than 150 Triangle wedding experts will be on hand to offer advice and prepare you for your big day. The expo is open Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is $10 at the door (cash only), or $8 in advance.

The Scott Building is the place to be this weekend for parents and children of all ages. The Children’s Spring Clothing and Baby Equipment Sale will be held Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The event, sponsored by Triangle Mothers of Twins & Triplets, will have a large selection of used clothing, toys, games and equipment. Members can take advantage of an additional preview night Friday from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Sunday, the Scott Building will host the Toy Train Sale and Swap Meet. More than 100 vendors will have an assortment of trains, accessories, tracks, switches and more. There also will be an auction and special raffle. The doors will be open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission is $6 for adults and free for children under 13 with a paying adult.

So there you go. It’s a weekend of love, marriage and babies at the N.C. State Fairgrounds. Don’t forget, tickets are now on sale for the 2012 N.C. State Fair, Oct. 11-21. Buy in advance and save on gate, ride and concert tickets. You can purchase tickets now at






Artist Spotlight: Matthew West and Sanctus Real

August 09, 2012 By: Honey Bee Category: Uncategorized

Matthew West, a Dove Award-winning contemporary Christian singer and songwriter, has released eight albums since his start as an independent artist in the late 1990s. Four of his songs have peaked at No. 1 on the Christian charts.

What I love about West’s music is his sincerity, vulnerability and honesty. He’s not afraid to bring up difficult subjects. His lyrics challenge listeners to make changes to the way they live their lives to more accurately reflect their Christian faith.

In his song “My Own Little World,” West explores the apathy many people experience to the plight of the world around them. He points out that we are so focused on ourselves, we fail to look around and see the needs of others.

“I don’t wanna miss what matters.

I wanna be reaching out.

Show me the greater purpose,

So I can start living right now

Outside my own little world.”

“My songs have always been inspired by real life and moments that move me to write about them. Joy, pain, struggles, victories, loss, and people I meet along the way are all ingredients to the songs I write,” West says on his website.  But he doesn’t just look to his own experiences for inspiration. West also has a heart for his listeners. His entire last album “Story of Your Life,” was based on stories from listeners. The concept was so unique and well-received, that he will be releasing his new album, “Forgiven,” this fall in a similar format.

West will be performing at the N.C. State Fair with Christian rock group Sanctus Real. The Grammy-nominated Dove Award winners are known for singles like “The Face of Love,”  “Forgiven” and “Lead Me,” which was popularized by the movie “Fireproof.”

Matthew West and Sanctus Real will both be performing at the State Fair on Friday, Oct. 12, in Dorton Arena. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the concert starts at 7:30. Tickets are $10. Tickets are available at

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