Final preparations under way for opening of Stanislaus County Fair

Final preparations are in full swing as the Stanislaus County Fair readies for the gates to open at 5 p.m. Friday.

Entertainers ranging from Grand Funk Railroad to Dora the Explorer will perform on fair stages the next 10 days and nights.

The fair held its annual media preview luncheon and tour today, giving reporters and photographers a look at how things are shaping up on the fairgrounds.

Spokeswoman Pennie Rorex seemed to take particular pleasure in alerting reporters that mini-doughnuts are returning after an absence of a few years. As proof, proprietors Danny Johnson and Naftuli Furman from Sacramento fried dozens of the small doughnuts in oil heated to 360 degrees at the Danny’s Mini Doughnuts booth inside the Costco-sponsored exhibition hall.

The fair’s food fixation is on display as vendors are stocking shelves with hamburgers, hot dogs, corn dogs, funnel cake batter, fresh fruit, even egg rolls that will be served on sticks.

“We’re in the business of helping people have fun,” Rorex explained.

The fair’s staff of roughly 375 workers, augmented by hundreds of volunteers, will work full-tilt in three shifts each day of the fair.

Fair executives do not issue their attendance estimates. But Rorex said a successful fair needs great weather, outstanding entertainment and great publicity. The weather appears to be cooperating. The forecast for Turlock calls for highs in the low to mid-90s into early next week.

Related stories from Merced Sun-Star