The 111th edition of the California Mid-Winter Fair opens today afternoon with a recognition of both veterans and senior citizens.
The gates open at 3 p.m. That represents a change in opening day hours from previous years. Opening hours also have changed for weekdays, to 5 p.m. Monday through the second Friday. The fair will open at noon on both Saturdays and Sundays.
Meanwhile, presale tickets will continue on sale through Thursday or until supplies are exhausted.
The 111th annual fair, with its theme “Get Your Kicks on Route 86”, runs March 1 through 10 at the fairgrounds, 200 E. 2nd St. in Imperial. The presenting sponsor is again Imperial Valley Auto.
The opening day continues the tradition of a Military and Senior Citizen Appreciation Day. Admission is free to all military personnel and veterans along with one guest. Proper military or veteran’s identification is required. Admission is also free to Senior Citizens with a special coupon.
The Traxxas Monster Truck Tour will take to the track on opening night, March 1. It will be followed by Freestyle Motocross Saturday. The opening weekend events will be wrapped up on Sunday, March 3, with the traditional Dia De La Familia events.
A demolition derby will be Wednesday, March 6, and dwarf car racing will be on the track Saturday, March 9. The jalopy-based Heritage 500 Race will take to the track the final day of the fair, March 10.
Concerts will include Walk Like a Man, a Frankie Valli tribute, March 1 and Kalimba, an Earth Wind and Fire tribute March 2. Grupo Regrado and Codigo 442 will be performing March 3. Other concerts include Voltai-EDM DJ, March 4; Pure Majak, March 5; Queen Nation, a Queen tribute, March 7, Hip Hop Hooray, March 8 and Left of Centre, March 9. There also will be a number of other local acts throughout the fair.
Additional community traditions will take place in events during the 10 days with High School Madness, March 4, in the grandstands, and the popular Craft Beer Festival on March 5. A unique fun event has also been added in the Casa De Manana building with “Silent Disco.”
Sales of Presale Tickets and Family Value Packs continued through February 28. Presale prices are: $8 for adult, $6 child and $6 for seniors. WOW Coupons redeemable for carnival rides any one day of the fair are $25. Family Value Packs are $70. The family packs include two adult, two child admissions, two WOW coupons and admissions to the 2019 San Diego County Fair along with $90 in fair coupons.
Presale locations include all Valley Rabobank branches, Sonic Burger, 2299 N. Imperial Ave., El Centro, the Circle K/Shell station, 610 S Brawley Ave., in Brawley and the fair box office.