By Jan Boston Sellers
It is Labor Day weekend, also known as the unofficial end of summer. Even though autumn doesn’t officially arrive for about three more weeks, most of us in the South start wrapping up summer and opening up football, the fair and all those other fall related activities by Labor Day.
The Labor Day holiday is traditionally a very busy one on Tennessee highways, particularly when you throw in the opening of Tennessee football in the Volunteer State. Neyland Stadium, which becomes one of the state’s largest cities on home game days, will open to more than 100,000 fans Saturday night as the much anticipated 2013 season opens with new Coach Butch Jones. Recent news reports indicate tickets are scarce for the Saturday night home opener against Austin Peay.
Cumberland County High School Jets and Stone Memorial Panthers are also back in play this Friday night. The Jets will travel to Scott County. Kickoff is at 6:30. The Panthers will host Dekalb County. That game will begin at 7 p.m.
The Cumberland County Fair will also be in full swing this holiday weekend. Activities for Friday include a 5 p.m. Midway opening; live blacksmith demonstrations with John Taylor from 6-8 p.m.; the Cumberland County Fair Horse and Mule Show starting at 6 p.m.; and the Junior Market Lamb and Swine Show at 7 p.m.
Saturday marks the last full day of the fair with a 9 a.m. opening with the Junior Market Goat Show; the noon until 5 p.m. Family Day at the Midway; Family Farm Olympics at 2 p.m.; the Youth Cumberland County Junior Livestock sale at 6 p.m.; and the much anticipated Fair Idol contest at 7 p.m.
The exhibit buildings with all the arts, crafts, produce awards, etc. are open daily from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m. Don’t forget to stop by some of the mouth watering producing food vendors just outside, and, of course, inside the carnival area.
Speaking of the fair, congratulations are in order for Kalei Hollingsworth. The Stone Memorial student is the new 2013 Cumberland County Fairest of the Fair. She will represent the county in the 2014 Nashville State Pageant. It is slated for January. Junior Fair title went to Miss Becca Patton. The 10-12 year old title was won by Madison White. Dakota Morgan is the newly crowned 7-9 year-old Little Miss, and the Wee Miss winner was Savanna Amos.
If you are traveling to a high school or college football game, the fair, the lake, the relatives or any other activity this weekend, please remember to exercise caution when traveling on either the roadways or the waterways. Watch out for other motorists, wear your safety belts, observe speed limits, double check for motorcycles when changing lanes and, as always, never mix alcohol when driving a boat or a car. The Tennessee Highway Patrol and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency will be in full force on the roads and the water as they attempt to prevent accidents.