With Metro’s fairgrounds ceasing operations by the end of the year, the fair board is revving up for a relatively busy last hurrah that includes a state fair, several concerts and monthly racing.
The final state fair, scheduled for Sept. 10-19, will be operated by Nashville-based Rockhouse Partners and North American Midway Entertainment, which served as the vendor for last year’s fair. A lease agreement between the board and company representatives should be signed within a few days.
Updating the board on their plans Tuesday, Chrysty Fortner of Rockhouse said this year’s state fair will use the same admissions prices charged in 2008 — $8 at the gate and $4 in advance. Wristbands for rides will cost $25 at the event and $20 in advance. Parking for the state fair will be free.
Free admission will be offered to students in Davidson County, as well as its seven surrounding counties.
Fortner said the layout for this year’s fair will have a “festival feel,” with the agriculture components integrated with live music and the carnival. She said the company plans to add a “Fanfair”-style stage and concert series. Musical acts are to be revealed soon.
Traditions she said the state fair will continue include the opening ceremonies, green energy expositions, Volunteer Village, Kids Country, and the entertainment state and food court.
But before the 2010 Tennessee State fair even beings, Fastrax Entertainment and ABC Corp. will be using the facility’s grandstands to hold between six and 12 concerts through the end of the summer.
Ron Jennett, owner of Fastrax, said he should the musical lineup in the next 30 days. Tickets for each show will cost between $10 and $15.
“We’re not going to bring artists out here who nobody’s ever heard of and try to put on a show,” Jennett said. “We’re trying to bring good shows back to this facility.”
Each month, the facility’s racetrack will also feature monthly local racing. In the past, the racing series had operated on a weekly basis.
While these and other events take place, a task force appointed by Mayor Karl Dean will be channeling public input to study the future of the 117-acre fairgrounds property off Nolensville Pike.
The task force, working in conjunction with the Nashville Civic Design Center, will kick off a series of monthly meetings Monday, April 12, at 6:30 p.m. at Wilson Hall, which is located at the fairgrounds.