By her accounts, Brandon's own Betty Jo Tompkins has been going to state and county fairs since she was 10 years old and the enthusiasm to continue so builds every year.
This year, as a supporter of the Florida State Fair, Betty Jo Tompkins has been traveling the community speaker circuit visiting chamber, service and community organization meetings to boost support and enthusiasm for the 12-day event.
For one thing, she told members of the Greater Riverview Chamber of Commerce, "there's a professionally produced light show and it's free."
Then there's the Taste of the Fair.
"You've heard of all those exciting and interesting foods that you can always find at the fair?" she said. "This year you'll be able to get sample sizes and they'll be free or at a very low cost."
Below, and in the video attached to this post, Tompkins recites a poem she penned detailing 50 reasons why you should go to the Florida State Fair.
About The 2013 Florida State Fair
- Billed as the 109th Annual "Discover the Fun" Florida State Fair, Saturday, Feb. 9 is promoted as "4-H and FFA Day," with free admission for 4-H and FFA members with identification or jacket. Gates open at 9 a.m.; the midway at 10 a.m. Hours are the same Sunday, Feb. 10, which is noted as "Armband Day."
- The fair funs for 12 days, from Feb. 7-18, at the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa, at 4800 North U.S. Highway 301.
- Exhibits celebrate the 500th anniversary of the founding of Florida by explorer Juan Ponce de Leon.
- Gates open daily at 9 a.m.
- Closing times vary depending on the day of the week and weather conditions.
- Admission is $8 for adults and $4 for children, ages 6-11. Children age 5 and under are admitted for free.
- Parking is free.
- Call: 813-621-7871. The toll-free number is 1-800-345-3247.
- Visit the Florida State Fair online for daily times, events, details and more.
Betty Jo Tompkins' 50 Reasons To Go To The Florida State Fair4-H Alligator Show Animals Bakery Cacophony of Noise Circus Cracker Country (history) Dairy Contests Dance Troupes Galore Entertainment Equestrian Teams Fabulous Fun Fair Food FFA Giant Midway Impersonators Galore International Wine Competition Judging Juggling Kaleidoscope of Colors Lawnmower Races Live Entertainment Moo-ternity Ward Needlework Open Beef Contests Oscar the Robot Paddleboats on the Lake Pidgeon Contests Ponce de Leon Show Poultry Shows Pure-bred Dogs Racing Pigs Ranch Rodeo Russell Terriers Sand Sculptures Scavenger Hunt Senior Day Senior Day Again Steam Engines Student Day Swine Contest Taste of the Fair Tours Train Depot Tropical Fish Value Washboard Willie Wanda Wildlife Woodcarving Zoo
For more, see 100 Free Things To See and Do at the Fair