From the start of the home economics judging at 8 a.m. Saturday to the drawing for prizes at midnight one week later, the 19 men and women who plan the annual Howard County Fair hope to offer something to interest everyone -- within the bounds of tradition.
No major changes are planned in the events that traditionally make up the annual county fair, said Fair Board President Harold "Bucky" Clark, a dairy and grain farmer.
"We're trying to be an old-fashioned fair in one respect, that we'll have a good representation of livestock animals," Clark said.
"We usually have something for everyone."
An estimated 100,000 people passed through the gates in 1990, and Clark hopes to top that total this year.
"It all depends on the weather," he said, adding that extreme heat is even worse than rain at dampening the enthusiasm offair-goers.
Fair gates will open daily at 8 a.m. Saturday throughAug. 17.
The midway will open daily at 1 p.m. except on the finalday of the fair, when it opens at 11 a.m.
Tickets are $3 for general admission, $2 for seniors, and children under 12 are admitted free.
A sampling of events:
* Horse shows -- The Howard County Fair is the only one in Maryland offering a full week of horse shows, reported Superintendent Peggy Schultz.
The 4-H horse and pony show at 8:30 a.m. Saturday will offer both English and western classes, butthe open shows generally attract more English riders. Western classes have been canceled in the past because of lack of entries, Schultz said.
The horse shows will include in-hand (led in ring), equitation and driving classes.
The costume classes are fun for viewers, particularly the riders of Arabians, "who have a gorgeous costume show," Schultz added.
* Farm Queen contest -- Four women will compete to become the 1991 County Farm Queen in the contest at 4:30 p.m. Sunday. Entrants are judged on poise, attractiveness and ability to speakwell.
"We want them to be spokesmen for agriculture, so the more they know about agriculture, the better," said contest chairman Merhlyn Barnes.
Dawn Knill, the 1990 Farm Queen, fulfills that requirement.
Knill, 17, grew up on L-Meadow Farm, a 125-acre dairy farm inWoodbine.
A June graduate of Glenelg High School, she plans to enter the University of Maryland at College Park next fall to study agriculture.
* New Zoo Revue -- An animal dress-up contest, the New Zoo Revue is open to anyone between the ages of 8 and 18.
Contestants must write scripts about their animals and prizes will be given for the smallest and prettiest animals and best scripts, said Hope M. Jackson, 4-H agent, University of Maryland Extension Service.