164th annual event offers plenty of family fun four four day run

It’s time for “Country Nights and Carnival Lights,” at the El Dorado County Fair that opens this coming Thursday, June 15 with four straight days of good old fashion fair time fun and something for everyone. 


Coming to life on the El Dorado County Fair and Event Center in Placerville at 100 Placerville Drive, this will be the 164th rendition of the fair in El Dorado County. The event is estimated to attract some 60,000 visitors over its four day run that commences on Father’s Day with plenty to do with dear old dad. 

The 2023 version of the El Dorado County Fair is looking to live up to its theme, “Country Nights and Carnval Lights,” as it brings you all the classic fair favorites, from the carnival rides to pig races, funnel cake eating contests, hypnotists shows, local exhibits, the El Dorado Rose Pageant, a hoopla of live music on multiple stages and more, not to mention all of that fair food you love to devour. 


Thanks to the team at the El Dorado County Fair, here is a sneak peak at a number of the many highlights you’ll find that are sure to delight multiple ages starting this Thursday, along with hours, ticket information and more:

Family fun is the name of the game

In addition to 26 carnival rides for thrills and fun, there are so many fun things at El Dorado County Fair.


Take a little trip around the grounds on the Willamette Valley Express. The train picks up in front of the Commercial Building and takes fairgoers on their own personal guided tour of what’s happening at the fair. The train runs from noon to 6 p.m. daily.


Step back in time — watch blacksmiths demonstrate how they made things in the “olden days,” and you may even get to buy an original meat flipper or some other fun item handmade by these professional blacksmiths.

Speaking of stepping back in time, the El Dorado County Museum will be open all four days of the fair from noon-5 p.m. The museum is brimming with history; check out old trains and see how things have evolved from “back in the day” until now.


Kid’s Town America is a free fun-for-all with activities to stimulate children and wear them out just a little bit.

On Thursday at 7 p.m. head over to the Imagination Theater and see who the next El Dorado Rose will be. These ladies work hard all year, dressed in their authentic period dresses. You’ll find the El Dorado Rose and her court at many community events throughout the year.

The fair receives many photo entries, and you will find them in the Organ Room, along with the Mineral & Gems, and fine art. One of the most prestigious awards an entrant can get is the People’s Choice Award, so be sure and vote between noon and 6 p.m. each day.

Have gardening questions? The Master Gardeners are in the El Dorado Savings Floriculture Building; there you will find tons of inspiration for your garden. Have questions? They will be happy to help you. A wealth of gardening knowledge can be found in that building.

Want to learn how to can the bounty from your garden? Head over to the Home Arts Building and the Master Food Preservers will be there with special tastings throughout the fair along with some great tips and techniques for you in your kitchen.

Be sure to look out for Flo the Clown. She is always up to something fun. At the Kids’ Corral on Thursday at 2 p.m. pig out at the Funnel Cake eating contest, if you miss out on Thursday, she’ll be back to do the same thing on Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 1 p.m. Think you can blow big bubbles with bubble gum? Compete with other bubble-blowers every day of the fair at 4:30 p.m.

One of the coolest things you will see at the fair is the Big Wheel Races. Held in the Plaza near the Capital Bar Stage, little ones line up every day at 6 p.m. to see who’s the speed demon on big wheels. Flo will share the fun announcing this event and has some great prizes for the winners.

Steve the Balloon Guy roams around the fair with his magical balloons. He can make just about anything and it’s quite the treat to watch. See if you can guess what he is making before he’s finished; he will surprise you.

Our hypnotist, Dr. Jon Taylor, is on the Mountain F stage three times daily with his hypnotic skills and comedy, you will be laughing through the shows, unless of course, you are busy clucking like a chicken. You will find Dr. Jon on the Mountain F Stage every day of the fair at 4 p.m.; Thursday, Saturday and Sunday at 6:30 p.m.; Friday at 7 p.m.; and his final show each night —Thursday at 9:30 p.m., Friday at 11 p.m., Saturday at 9:30 p.m. and Sunday at 8:30 p.m.

At any time during the fair, you will find a stage with live music. There are four stages, the Capital Bar Stage, the Red Hawk Casino & Resort Stage, Mountain F Stage, and the Community Stage (on the main lawn).

Check out the daily schedules — there is even more to do each day including Game Shows, the Interactive Family Fun Zone, four stages of music, nightly events in the grandstand and more.

Featured events in the grandstand

FMX Ramp-Age Thursday 6 p.m. in the Grandstands (free with fair admission)

FMX Ramp-Age is a one-of-a-kind Freestyle Motocross show. In this show, Adam Jones, an established world-class FMX athlete, uses his skills riding an FMX bike to wow the crowd, but more importantly, he leads you through this experience with a custom in-helmet microphone. With this new concept, fairgoers are connected directly to the star of the show and interact with him to help answer his questions, pick tricks they want to see, and be part of the show. Also, featuring the Beautiful Kimberly amongst the crowd finding volunteers to answer questions and keep the fun moving.

Arreola’s Hispanic Rodeo Friday night brings bull riding to the Grandstands at 7 p.m. with dancing horses and a live band (free with fair admission)

Opening for the bull riders, El Dorado Gold Equestrian Drill Team color guard will round around the track. Then the crazy bull riders will mount the wild bulls and do their best to hang on for the longest eight seconds of their lives.

Studebaker Wheelbarrow Races Saturday at 5 p.m. in the Grandstands (free with fair admission)

The Wheelbarrow Race is an annual tradition showcasing fierce competitors of all ages. Participants train hard for the big day where they traverse through obstacles such as mud pits, railroad ties and balance beams as the stadium thunders with applause. Winners are showcased in local media and have bragging rights unlike any other.

The Rubicon Challenge Sunday at 2 p.m. in the Grandstands (free with fair admission)

With the infield of the Placerville Speedway set with all the same obstacles one would find on the Rubicon Trail, you won’t want to miss this local’s challenge of man vs. rock. Different types of 4WD drive vehicles compete against each other for the best times and cleanest runs over boulders, through the mud and off to the finish line. You won’t see this kind of competition anywhere except at our fair.

Bull riding returns Friday night

Friday night brings bull riding to the Grandstands. Opening the show at 6 p.m. is a fair favorite, Mutton Bustin’. The crowd loves to cheer the little busters on as they hang on for dear life to try to get their eight second ride on fuzzy sheep. If you’ve never seen it before, it’s a must see.

Opening for the bull riders, the El Dorado Gold Equestrian Drill Team color guard will ride around the track at the Grandstands.

At 7 p.m. the crazy bull riders will mount the wild bulls and do their best to hang on for the longest eight seconds of their lives. Brought to you by Arreola’s Hispanic Rodeo, some great music, dancing horses and of course, the bull riding should keep the crowd cheering and on their feet.

So, get on your cowboy hat and boots, and head over to the Grandstands (free with fair admission) on Friday night for some exciting action.

Little buckaroo offerings

On Friday at 2 p.m. Little Buckaroos (ages 3-5) and Junior Pardners (ages 6-8) will head into the ring at the Henningsen Arena to try their hands at cowboyin’.

Little Buckaroos will compete individually in undressing a goat, a stick horse race, and as a team of two, wagon hay hauling. The Junior Pardners will individually compete in roping a bull (just a dummy), wagon hay hauling, and then as a team of two, milking a goat. Winners of each level will receive a belt buckle.

https://30cd1bfa08540dfe13d5f0d979832801.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-40/html/container.html All of the Little Buckaroos and Junior Pardners are based on age as of June 15. Pre-register at eldoradocountyfair.org/contest.html.

Kids take the wheel with Pedal Pullers

Kids are the stars of the show with Pedal Pullers. Pedal pullers (tractors of many colors) have pulled more than 400 pounds the full length of the track. These custom-built pedal tractors are real weight-pull sleds for kids to have real fun designed for children ages 4-11.

Starting at 75 pounds for 4 year olds, the weight increases for older kids and increases even more for each round. If you are able to pull the full distance of 25-feet, you can come back for the next round and pull even more.

And when they are finished, they get to show off a scorecard featuring each child’s event in the header with the results of each of their pulls recorded below. This is a great keepsake to be admired on your refrigerator door.

Pedal Pushers are on the Main Lawn with two races per day — Thursday: 1:30 and 4:30 p.m., Friday: 1:30 and 5 p.m., Saturday: 12:30 and 4 p.m., and Sunday: 1:30 and 5:30 p.m.

Carnival shines bright in 2023

The carnival is a huge part of why people attend their county fair. And El Dorado County Fair has some of the best rides. Paul Maurer Shows, the carnival providing all the riding fun, is bringing 26 carnival rides to El Dorado County.

Fairgoers will be excited to see and ride on the brand-new Expo Wheel. At 65 feet in the air, you will have a glorious view of the entire fairgrounds.

In addition to the Expo Wheel, some of the “super-spectacular” rides will be The Freak Out. The Freak Out dazzles riders with its over-the-top thrills. Riders sit in bottomless seats with their feet hanging below them. As the claw begins to rotate, the pendulum swings back and forth. Thrill seekers will end their ride asking to do it again.

The Drop Tower propels riders down a 100 foot drop tower.

The Rock Star returns to Placerville. This high-rising magic carpet ride will thrill riders, rockin’ in their seats!

Other rides in the main carnival are The Zipper, Zendar, G-Force (The Gravitron), Bumper Cars, Tornado, Deluxe Sizzler, Silver Streak, Kite Flyer, the Mardi Gras Fun House, Berry-go-Round, Roc n’ Tug and the Super Slide.

In the Plaza near the Commercial Building, the kiddie carnival is full of fun for the “littles” too. The classic Carousel is a family favorite, along with Raders, Super Trucks, Go Gator (mini roller coaster), Jumping Buggies, Motorcycles, Semi-Trucks and the Safari Train.

With so many rides to choose from, the best buy at the fair is the four-day, unlimited ride wristband for $75, available for purchase until June 14 at midnight. This is not available once the fair opens. Other options are the single-day, unlimited ride wristband, offered for $30 presale (until midnight June 14) or $40 during the fair. Another great presale deal is a sheet of 20 tickets for $12 or $20 during the fair. One ticket is $1, and each ride takes between four and eight tickets. For presale tickets, visit the fair’s website at eldoradocountyfair.org.

Wheelbarrow Races dish our grit, grunts and gold

On Saturday at 5 p.m. head over to the Grandstands (free with fair admission) and watch the best home-grown competition in town.

This is an intense competition and participants train hard. The contest requires they traverse through various obstacles such as mud pits, railroad ties, balance beams, humps and bumps, all while carrying a heavy load in their homemade wooden wheelbarrows.

There are several different races, each with different entry fees and purses. Youth and Teens may enter for free and the winner walks away with $100.

The High School Team Race Challenge may enter for no charge, first place purse is $200.

The Old Timer’s Race has a $40 entry fee and the winner receives $200. Women can compete against each other with a $75 entry fee and the first-place winner receives $1,000. The Championship Race also comes with a $75 entry fee and the champion wins $1,000. Of course, bragging rights for anyone that participates is well-earned!

You can enter online at studebakerwheelbarrowraces.com until June 16. All contestants must check in at the Grandstands between 3-4:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 17. The race is free to watch in the Grandstands; get there early because this is a popular event. The races begin at 5 p.m

Father’s Day Family Look alike contest

Held on Father’s Day, Sunday, June 18 at 3 p.m. is the popular annual Father-Child look-alike contest. Join in the fun and watch for the winners at this year’s El Dorado County Fair. Fair CEO Kathy Dunkak shares, “Watching the families compete — some dress alike, some in costume and some are just amazingly cute … It is so heart-warming and everyone is all smiles.”

Not just fathers and sons — fathers and daughters, fathers, sons, and fathers of fathers (multi-generation) come to compete for those first-place ribbons, bragging rights and the chance at a unique prize. Just show up 15 minutes before the contest to the right of the Community Stage to enter.

And Sunday is a great day for fathers and families to come to the fair. One of the best pre-sale deals for the fair is the Father’s Day Package. Available until June 14 for $40 (price varies by size), Dad (Mom, Grandpa, Auntie) gets a t-shirt that allows him/her into the fair for free on Sunday when wearing the t-shirt, plus a general admission ticket, a junior admission ticket and one unlimited rides carnival wristband. Save your parent some money and grab a Father’s Day package then come to the fair on Father’s Day. For more information visit our website at eldoradocountyfair.org.

Multiple stages of music all day each day

The Outlaw Mariachi Friday at 8 and 10 p.m. on the Community Stage (Main Lawn)
With a mix of western wear and mariachi sombreros, trumpet and drums, mariachi guitars and ZZ Top-like beards, Outlaw Mariachi is just as much of a fun sight to see as it is an eclectic joy to the ears with its unique blend of rock, cumbias, pop, metal, hip hop, classic rock and more. From Queen, Rammstein, Beastie Boys to Sublime to Selena, Freddy Fender, Star Wars-themed cumbias, and new takes on classic mariachi staples, the Outlaw Mariachi band will rock, roll and dance its mix of cover and original tunes into the ears and hips of fairgoers. Don’t miss this group.

Bad Jovi – Bad Company & Bon Jovi Tribute Band at 8 and 10 p.m. on the Community Stage (Main Lawn)
Experience the high-energy performances of BAD JOVI captivating and transporting you back to the ’70s and ’80s when Bad Company and Bon Jovi were on top of the charts and rocking the world. Playing favorites such as: “Rock ’n’ Roll Fantasy,” “Shooting Star,” “Feel like Makin’ Love,” “You Give Love a Bad Name,” “Wanted Dead or Alive” and “Livin’ on a Prayer,” BAD JOVI’s blend of musicianship, creativity and tradition provides for a classic rock ‘n’ roll experience second to none.

Frankie Soul and No Control Thursday 8 and 10 p.m. on the Community Stage (Main Lawn)
A local favorite, Frankie “Soul” Rodriguez is back with his band. Frankie has been playing music in the Northern California area for 30 years. He has appeared on stage opening shows for such acts as Tower of Power, Elvin Bishop, Bo Diddley and many others. The guitar riffs will get you on your feet as they play covers from all genres.

Dream & The Dreamer (Our Crab Feed Band!) Thursday 12:15, 1:30 and 2:45 p.m. on the Mountain F Stage
Dream and the Dreamer has been voted best band in Nevada County five times since 2011. It is the Fair’s go-to band for the annual Crab Feed, due to the diversity of the songs and genre it plays. From rock and roll, country, blues, or reggae, the band covers it all. The band may start out with acoustic accouterments but soon will be rocking the stage with an electrifying guitar, bass, keyboards, drums and percussion instruments.

Attila Viola and the Bakersfield Boys Thursday 5:30, 8:15 and 10:30 p.m. on the Mountain F Stage
Attila Viola and the Bakersfield Boys is a Bakersfield-inspired band playing California country music, based on the life, travels and songs of Attila Viola, as well as the masters who came before such as Merle Haggard, Dwight Yoakam, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Johnny Paycheck and more. It music sticks to the script of the traditional Bakersfield sound but also blends in some very hard and strong guitar work as well as a more contemporary, very high-energy backbeat.

Gene Barnett Thursday 8:15, 9:15 and 10:30 p.m. on the Capital Bar Stage
Barnett, a solo acoustic guitar player, sings throughout California and Lake Tahoe performing reggae, rock and roll, country rock and pop.

The Drytown Smugglers Thursday 4:15, 5:15 and 6:30 p.m. on the Capital Bar Stage
The Drytown Smugglers is a local trio playing a combination of bluegrass, Americana, old-time jug and re-purposed favorites. From foot-stompin’, fast pickin’ of both old standards and modern favorites, to New Orleans murder ballads, to Jerry Garcia love, it has it all covered in string fashion. Call it “Stewedgrass.”

Group Therapy Thursday 8:30, 9:30 and 10:45 p.m. on the Red Hawk Casino & Resort Stage
Group Therapy plays your favorite classic rock and R&B tunes. It has been rocking stages all over the region playing its unique blend of covers that include tunes from the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s and ’90s.

Kyliana Mari Thursday 12:15 , 1:15 and 2:30 p.m. on the Capital Bar Stage, and Sunday 12:15, 1:15 and 2:15 p.m. on the same stage.
Kyliana Mari plays a unique blend of pop, country and rock cover tunes, showcased by a large, diverse set of originals. She grew up in Placerville and graduated from El Dorado High School in 2019. She is a top-notch performer and a talented songwriter.

Silver City Thursday 12:15, 1:15 and 2:30 p.m. on the Red Hawk Casino & Resort Stage
Silver City provides a fresh take on old and new bluegrass and country standards, plus a touch of swing. The current lineup includes some of the area’s best pickers guaranteed to keep toes tapping.

CarTunes Thursday 4:15, 6:30 and 8:30 p.m. on the Red Hawk Casino & Resort Stage
The CarTunes Band presents the sounds of the classic rock era. Some are sure hit standards that never grow old and get better with time. Others are treasured classics that many bands just don’t perform anymore. The CarTunes renditions will take you back to the day that made driving fun with the windows down and the radio up — loud.

Street Wheelers Friday 12:30, 1:45 and 3 p.m. on the Mountain F Stage
The Street Wheelers is back again to get the biggest party in El Dorado County going. A rock band of seasoned musicians from the Sierra foothills featuring their own take on classic songs, with originals that you’ll be humming all day. True gold.

Austin Mo Xperience Friday 6, 8 and 9:30 p.m. on the Mountain F Stage
The Austin Mo Xperience is one of Northern California’s top blues and rock trios. The musicians’ energetic performance will keep you loving every note that is produced from the heart and soul of each band member. Playing a vast catalog of hit songs from bands such as The Eagles, Eric Clapton, Peter Frampton and Stevie Ray Vaughan.

Under the Canopy Friday at 12:30, 1:30 and 2:45 p.m. on the Capital Bar Stage
A duo group who plays popular folk/country ’50s-’70s and originals. The duo plays rhythm and lead guitar while singing harmonies with a smile. Playing together for three years, they gig often and are excited to be at the fair.

Tony Quinn Friday at 4:30, 5:30 and 6:45 p.m. on the Capital Bar Stage, and Saturday at 2:45, 4 and 5:30 p.m. on the same stage
Quinn is a multi-instrumentalist and published songwriter. In 2009 he co-founded the Rock Bottom Boys bluegrass band playing at fairs and festivals on the west coast. Currently he works mostly as a soloist. He has released two CDs, “Ambassador of the Blues” and “When I Was Young.”

Legal Addiction on Friday at 8:30, 9:30 and 10:45 p.m. on the Capital Bar Stage
One of Northern California’s premier cover and party bands, Legal Addiction provides some of your favorite classic rock, country and R&B favorites. Made up of four talented musicians, Legal Addiction is constantly adding songs and creating a great show.

Rhonda Lynn & Edgewood Station on Friday at 12:15, 1:15 and 2:30 p.m. on the Red Hawk Casino & Resort stage
Rhonda Lynn & Edgewood Station plays traditional country music with a little classic blues, jazz and standards thrown in for color. Formed and fronted by Rhonda Rogers it has some amazing talented musicians with a sound that is upbeat and energetic.

The Beer Scouts on Friday at 4:15, 5:15 and 6:15 p.m. on the Red Hawk Casino & Resort stage
The Beer Scouts is a San Francisco power trio that defines raw rock and roll with guitar, bass and drums. The band plays blues and straight-ahead rock and roll influenced by artists such as The Beatles, Cheap Trick, Grand Funk Railroad and even The Monkees.

Heirloom Quartet on Friday at 8:30, 9:30 and 10:45 p.m. on the Red Hawk Casino & Resort stage
Heirloom Quartet was formed during the summer of 2020 by four musicians aching to play music after all the shutdowns. Several months and many jam sessions later Heirloom was born, becoming widely known around Northern California as a band who performs a broad scope of musical genres, including jazz, rock, country, folk and more. What makes Heirloom stand out as a band is that the musicians find their own way to add unique twists to classic songs that have been around for decades.

FBI Band at 11:15 a.m., 1 and 2:30 p.m. on the Mountain F Stage
FBI Band is a true tribute to the legends of Motown while paying homage to the fathers of funk, touching and lifting your soul while invoking great memories. Experience some of the most sophisticated, intoxicating and enduring music ever recorded from The Temptations, The Four Tops, Smokey Robinson & the Miracles, Diana Ross & The Supremes, Aretha, Etta James, Stevie Wonder, the Staple Singers, Marvin Gaye, Sly and the Family Stone, Tower of Power, WAR and more.

Halie O’Ryan at 5:30, 8 and 11 p.m. on the Mountain F Stage
Halie O’Ryan is an American rock and roll singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who has been touring coast to coast across America, as well as performing hundreds of shows for our U.S. Armed Forces overseas. She has shared the stage with Joan Jett, played percussion with the Doobie Brothers and was blessed by Mick Fleetwood himself to perform at Fleetwood’s on Front St. in Maui.

Michelle Lambert at 10:15 and 11:30 a.m. and 12:45 p.m. on the Capital Bar Stage
Michelle Lambert is the kind of electric performer whose deep talent reveals itself in sly, knowing bursts. Whether it’s goosing the expectation of a breezy pop-country tune with a confident hip-hop flavored flow, an aching desire slipping out from between the lyrics of a ballad, or the way she dominates every inch of the stage before wielding her violin in classic rock goddess mode she is entertaining. This pop/folk singer/songwriter has toured out of Nashville, Los Angeles, Denver and Miami.

Grupo Ilusion Musical at 8 and 10 p.m. on the Capital Bar Stage
This local group of musicians plays a rowdy combination of ranchera and banda music, combined with traditional sounds of son, corrido and mariachi. You won’t be able to sit still while this group rocks the stage.

All Hat No Cattle at 10:30 and 11:45 a.m., and 12:45 p.m. on the Red Hawk Casino & Resort Stage
All Hat No Cattle is loaded with tons of hillbilly vibes and roots count. A country band that covers songs from multiple decades spanning from the ’80s to today’s hits.

The Neon Moon Band at 2:45, 4 and 5 p.m. on the Red Hawk Casino & Resort Stage
The Neon Moon Band is a local band performing a unique mix of blues, country and rock. If you want to line dance to country songs by Dwight Yoakum or Toby Keith, rock out to classic tock from Steppenwolf or Spirit, or just hold someone close to bluesy romantic ballads, the Neon Moon Band will get you up and out of your chair.

The Fabulous Liars at 7:45, 9 and 10:15 p.m. on the Red Hawk Casino & Resort Stage
The Fabulous Liars specialize in classic rock hits from famous artists and rarely heard tunes. Expect high-energy, great songs, great harmonies and fun.

American Mile at 5:30 and 7 p.m. on the Community Stage (Main Lawn).
American Mile has been carving its name into the roots of Southern rock and country music. With influences ranging from Aerosmith and the Black Crowes to Chris Stapleton and Tom Petty, its powerful sound has garnered the band important shows in front of thousands at festivals and stages.

Keep on Truckin’ at 12:15, 1:15 and 2:30 p.m. on the Mountain F Stage
A tribute to the Woodstock Generation, Keep On Truckin’ performs rock, blues, funk and R&B, faithfully recreating the musical experience of the greatest decade in music.

Kerosene Kings at 5:30, 7:30 and 9:15 p.m. on the Mountain F Stage
With driving guitars this heartfelt brand of pop rock will get you up and out of your seats and dancing. Kerosene Kings is wrapping up a year-long journey of the soul and is proud to share the first two singles from the upcoming album, “Think Like Water.”

Jacklyn Lovey at 3:45, 4:45 and 5:45 p.m. on the Capital Bar Stage
Jaclyn Lovey is a talented singer-songwriter from Placerville. On Season 14 of NBC’s The Voice her Blind Audition was the highest viewed audition during the season. She plays the guitar, bass, upright bass, ukulele, keyboards and a little banjo. She writes lyrically captivating songs and is regularly compared to Joni Mitchell, Sarah McLachlan and Lana Del Ray.

Crystal Image at 7:15, 8:15 and 9:15 p.m. on the Capital Bar Stage
John Covert and Crystal Image Trio is a variety band that plays classic rock, country, blues, ballroom and more. It has released more than 30 albums. Its original music has been featured on Disney, ABC, A&E, MTV and network TV shows and movies. A grand prize winner in the Nashville Music City Song Festival and multi-finalist in the American Song Festival, Covert’s songs have been featured on numerous TV shows and Hollywood movies.

Cynthia Renee and Company at 1:45, 2:45 and 4 p.m. on the Red Hawk Casino and Resort Stage
Cynthia Renee has been performing since she was 10 years old. Voted Folsom’s Best Local Band three years running, performing modern country to pop, the hits of the ’70s and ’80s in an upscale contemporary style. She is an amazing singer-songwriter with versatile vocals and professional backup instrumentalists.

Good Ol’ Boyz at 6:30, 7:45 and 9 p.m. on the Red Hawk Casino and Resort Stage
A unique blend of gritty, hard-hitting, West Coast hip-hop with rebel country and rock influences, the Good Ol’ Boyz has created a style completely its own.

Jr. Livestock Auction benefits youth

Saturday, June 18 at 10 a.m. is the highlight of the fair. It is the Jr Livestock Auction, and many of the local youth work very hard for this day.

Whether they are in 4-H, FFA, or Grange, the lessons they learn raising and selling livestock are lifetime lessons, often producing lifetime friends and memories.

The week begins on the Monday before the fair, bringing in their animal to be checked by a veterinarian, weighed,and getting their livestock settled in their pen for the week.

There are many competitions: Market Animal shows, Breeding Animal shows, Agility shows, Goat Milk Production, plus Showmanship which is mandatory for all youth showing market animals. It shows the judge how well the child knows animals, and you can usually tell who has spent more time with their animal. They also have a Livestock Judging contest, where youth show how much they know about judging livestock.

Market Hog, Market Goat and Pygmy Goat shows are held on Tuesday, June 13. Market Poultry, Poultry, Market Rabbit, Market Cattle and Market Lamb shows are on Wednesday, June 14, with the day ending in Pee Wee Showmanship, which is open to any primary age member (age 4-8) who can borrow a goat. it’s an opportunity for them to practice their showmanship skills and see if they may be a future 4-H, Grange or FFA member.

On Thursday the day begins with the Breeding Hog show followed by Hog Showmanship. Later that day is the Llama and Alpaca show, and Rabbit Agility show followed by Rabbit Costume contest. The Pack Goat show follows the Llama and Alpaca show, with the Dairy Goat shows, ending the day with Goat Milk Production competition. (Check the schedule for times.)

On Friday, the Large Animal Master Showmanship begins the day, with Small Animal Master Showmanship following. This is a competition amongst all the species competing to be named the best overall “Master” Showman. Exhibitors turn the tables and judge classes of animals to see who is the best evaluator in the Livestock judging contest right before the Pee Wee Rodeo at 2 p.m. ends the day.

Saturday morning is the BIG DAY — Auction Day! You can register to become a buyer between 8 and 9 a.m. near the auction ring. For those who want to contribute but can’t make the auction or don’t want to purchase an animal, joining “The Group” is an option. Based on the amount of funds raised, the price per pound for each species will be bumped to a minimum bid amount by the Group. All funds collected are spent on the current year’s exhibitors. The minimum contribution to be in the group is $200. For more information contact edcauction@gmail.com.

The Auction begins at 10 a.m. — it’s a big day for both youth and the fair community and for the past several years, one local participant volunteers to raise our “Heritage Hog.” The funds from the Heritage Hog go to the Heritage Foundation which began as a fundraising vehicle for needs at the fairgrounds. Funds from the Heritage Foundation were used to rebuild Johnny’s Gatehouse, assist with the cost of beef and hog wash racks, plus purchase new pens for livestock.

This year’s Heritage Hog is being raised and donated by Hazel Fermer, a student at Ponderosa High School and a member of Latrobe Outlander’s 4-H club. Last year’s Heritage Hog sold in excess of $70,000 — the support from this community does not go unnoticed. Anyone in the community can contribute to the preservation of our Fairgrounds by becoming a member of the Heritage Foundation at any time throughout the year.

Sunday starts with awards for Grange and 4-H programs then kids have a great time watching their dads compete to win a memorial buckle in honor of Jack Bare, a long-time supporter of the youth livestock program, in the “Father’s Day Swine Showmanship.”

The work that these kids put into their livestock projects is impressive. Visit the barns during the fair and talk to them. They might even teach you something about their animal!


Thursday, June 15: Senior Day and Kid’s Day (60 and over, 12 and under free until 6:30 p.m.)

  • Fair and carnival hours: noon to midnight
  • 11:50 a.m. — Opening Celebration
  • 6:00 p.m. — FMX RampAge
  • 7:00 p.m. — El Dorado Rose Pageant

Friday, June 16: Arreola’s Hispanic Rodeo, Teen Day (13-19 years old get in free until 4 p.m.)

  • Fair and carnival hours: noon to midnight
  • 6:00 p.m. — Mutton Bustin’
  • 7:00 p.m. — Arreola’s Hispanic Rodeo

Saturday, June 17: Bad Jovi concert, Wheelbarrow Races

  • Fair hours:10:00 a.m. to midnight
  • Carnival hours: noon to midnight
  • 5:00 p.m. —  Wheelbarrow Races 
  • 9:30 p.m. — Bad Jovi and Bon Jovi

Sunday, June 18: Father’s Day, Rubicon Jeep Jamboree Challenge

  • Fair and carnival hours: noon to 10:00 p.m.
  • Fathers can purchase a shirt, wear it and get in free on Sunday.
  • 1:30 — All-Alaskan Pedal Pullers
  • 2:00 — Jeep Jamboree Challenge

To see the full schedule packed with hundreds of events for all four days, click HERE.

Ticket information:

Tickets are discounted during the presale admissions period which ends June 14. Purchase tickets HERE.

Tickets range from $10 to $40 after the presale period.

  • Adult: $10.00
  • Youth: $8.00
  • Senior: $8.00
  • Unlimited Carnival Rides (single-day): $30.00
  • Unlimited Carnival Rides (season pass, pre-sale only): $75.00

Guests who show their active duty military ID get in free.

Special tickets are also available for purchase including a Father’s Day Package. For more details click HERE.

Getting there:

Parking on the fairgrounds is $10.00 per car.

El Dorado County Fair Air Quality & El Dorado Transit are offering a free shuttle to the Placerville Drive gate, which begins 30 minutes prior to the fair opening each day and runs until the fair closes. 

For more information click HERE.

Bill Sullivan
Author: Bill Sullivan

Bill Sullivan has over 25 years of professional journalism and content creation experience in which he has earned 37 professional awards. He is the co-founder/publisher of Folsom Times an All Town Media LLC product.