Pensacola, Florida
Sunday August 19th 2018


You Just Have to Go to the Fair

By Kate Peterson

Corn dogs, rides, beer, funnel cakes and games galore. This year the Pensacola Interstate Fair has so much to offer everyone from the little to the big.

To add to the fun, Little Richard is headlining the fair and he is a true legend—someone to see. He put the funk in rock and roll.

The fair has 16 musical acts this year, and one scheduled character visit. IN talked to General Manager Don Frenkel about the musical events planned and all that the fair has in store for visitors this year. After all, their motto is: “Come for the Fun, Leave With the Memories.”

The Frenkel family started the fair over 78 years ago. Since then, the Frenkel brothers have risen through the ranks of management.

“We were raised and trained in the business,” Frenkel said.

Music is a big part of what the fair has to offer.

“I watched Little Richard on an awards show three years ago, he brought the crowd down, and I said to myself that he would be great for the fair,” Frenkel said. “He is an icon, and a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee. It took me three years to get him here.”

Frenkel and team travel all over the country visiting other fairs to make the one in Pensacola even bigger and better. They have won blue ribbon awards for the quality of fair presented. Currently, out of the 48 state fairs, the Pensacola Interstate Fair is ranked number three. Other fairs are state funded; this one is privately funded and run, complete with a board of directors.

“The fair costs over two million to run each year, and 80 percent of that money stays in Pensacola,” Frenkel said. “We bring a lot of money to the city. This is an event that lasts 11 days, people stay in hotels here, they eat here and they shop here.”

Frenkel’s favorite part of the whole undertaking, “is sitting at the front gate and watching as the children and big kids come in, some for the first time, and watch their troubles melt away and worries go away looking forward to the fun.”

The Pensacola Interstate Fair starts on Thursday, Oct. 18 with Cat Country 98.7’s Catty-oke finals. The final judging will take place in front of a live crowd.
What time is it? Time to see a great show on Friday, Oct. 19. Legendary Morris Day and the Time will play some favorites such as “Jungle Love” and others. They are a funk and dance-pop  band formed in Minneapolis in 1981.

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