It's here once again..the Western Montana Fair, and it runs from Tuesday the 9th through Sunday the 14th at the Western Montana Fairgrounds at South Avenue and Russell.

Support Services Coordinator Tom Aldrich said the gates will open on Tuesday afternoon.

"The fair actually opens at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, and admission is free with an item of canned goods for the Missoula Food Bank. Starting Wednesday, the gates are open at 11 a.m. and they will close between 10 and 11 p.m. depending on attendance that day," Aldrich said. "We have a great fair planned this year, with our old favorite, the Missoula Stampede Rodeo all week, our Demolition Derby on Sunday, the closing day of the fair. The Diving Dogs will be back all week, and you can enter your own dog on site."

Aldrich said there will be something special for local bands at this year's fair.

"We're having a Battle of the Bands for the first time this year, and that's going to run from the 10th through the 13th," he said. "Along with that, of course we have the carnival, the great food and a new non-profit booth area called 'The Stomping Ground'. "

There's great music for concert-goers.

"We have everyone's favorite, Tyler Barham, and we'll also have Cale Moon, he's a rising star, along with local favorites Shane Clouse and Stomping Ground, and Rheannon is coming down from the Flathead," Aldrich continued.

Northstar Amusements will be back with their carnival this year, and there will once again be a special day just for kids.

"Kids Day will be Thursday, where kids will get in free until 6 p.m. and it will be a very special day at our Stomping Ground, with lots of activities for the little ones," he said. "Of course, we have the petting zoo like always, but this year we're going to have lawn games, lots of interactive activities, just lots of fun for the little ones this year."

Aldrich said the 4-H/FFA Stock Show and Sale will be Saturday in the 4-H Barn, with breakfast at 6:30 and the sale starting at 8:00 a.m. and the Demolition Derby will wrap things up on Sunday.

As usual, there are thousands of fair entries to enjoy, from photography to quilting to the most amazing cakes, cookies and pies.

Tickets prices are  Adult (16+): $6.00…Student (6-15): $3.00,,,Ages 5 and Under: Free...Senior Citizen (55+): $4.00..Military (with ID): Free…Family Pass (2 adults, 3 students): $15.

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