Center officials gearing up for county carnival

Published 6:00 pm Thursday, April 7, 2011

Turning stomachs, sticky fingers, tickets with serrated edges -the telltale signs of a good time.

Area residents and visitors to Brookhaven will have another chanceto be tossed around and pig out at the second annual Lincoln CountyCarnival in May. The fair will be held at the Lincoln Civic Centerfrom May 4 until May 8.

This year’s event will feature several new additions and promisesto pack the same amount of entertainment as 2010.

“People can expect a fun, family-oriented environment where you cancome out, enjoy yourself and feel safe doing it,” said LincolnCivic Center General Manager Quinn Jordan.

Another day has been added to this year’s event.

On May 4, several local praise bands from different churches anddenominations will perform under the covered arena beginning at 5p.m. The free concert is sponsored by local area churches and willlast until 8:30 p.m.

“We were able to rent the facility for like a family night,” saidJeff Freeman, student pastor at Philadelphia Baptist Church. “Wewant to reach out to do community (work) and bring some bandsin.”

Also new to the carnival will be the Food Alley. The strip ofvendors will give members of the community a chance to show offtheir culinary skills.

Jordan said that one of the biggest complaints last year was thecost of food, so he hopes the addition of the Food Alley will helpdrive food prices down and keep everyone full and smiling.

Not only has the 2011 fair seen the addition of a few new features,Jordan hopes the event will provide a safe, fun environment withoutbreaking people’s bank accounts.

On Wednesday, May 4, armbands can be purchased at the fair for aspecial discounted price of $15, which will allow participants toenjoy the attractions all evening. On Thursday, it will only costone ticket per ride. From Friday until the event’s end on Sunday,thrill-seekers can pay one price of $20 to ride as much as one’sstomach can handle. Single tickets will also be available for $1.25per ticket.

“We’re trying to be in an economical price (range) so more peoplecan attend the fair throughout the week,’ said Jordan.

The event will be open at 4:30 p.m. from Wednesday until Saturday.The fair will shutdown at 10 p.m. on the weekdays and 11:30 on theweekends. On Sunday, the event will operate from 2 until 8p.m.

Parking will be available for a small fee and directing vehicles totheir places will be members of the Lincoln County volunteer firedepartments.

The proceeds from the parking fees will benefit the civic centerand the volunteers. Jordan expects a large volume of traffic; andwith no stripes in the lot, parking can become a littlehectic.

“We don’t do it just to charge people,” said Jordan. “It is anabsolute must to have organized safe parking.”

The same company responsible for keeping the rides firing on allcylinders last year and who operates the state fair will keeppeople spinning and twirling again this year. Jordan said the earlyweek in May is the only time North American Midway Entertainment,based out of Madison, was free to come to Brookhaven.

“With the quality of service they have second to none, we would beat amiss to (not have them here),” he said.

Jordan hopes to double the 10,000 visitors the fair saw last yearwith additional advertising and by expanding the target audiencewell beyond Homeseekers Paradise.

“The Lincoln County management goal for the Lincoln County carnivalis to become Southwest Mississippi’s regional spring state fair,”he said. “We’re going to get there.”