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N.C. State Fair reveals new rides, entertainment

There will be five new rides, eight new entertainers and 117 concerts at this year’s N.C. State Fair, organizers announced Thursday.

The biggest new ride is the State Fair SkyGazer, a 155-foot-tall Ferris wheel that is the tallest ride ever brought to the fair. The 10-minute ride features more than a half million individual LED lights and holds more than 200 people at a time.

“We know fairgoers love the classics like racing pigs and lumberjack shows, but we also want to bring in a mix of new acts to continue to wow fair visitors,” fair manager Kent Yelverton said. “The SkyGazer literally raises the expectation level, and we can’t wait to see the wheel go up on the grounds. It’s the tallest traveling Ferris wheel in the United States and when assembled, it will tower 62 and half feet above Dorton Arena.”

Riders need a separate ticket ($6 in advance and $7 at the fair) is required for the SkyGazer.

Other new rides this year include the new Alien Abduction, SkyHawk, Sizzler and Dream Wheel.

Craft sodas will be available for the first time at the Our State Public House. The house already serves beer and wine. The Kegs, Corks and Pop pass (which runs $12-$17 in advance) includes fair admission, admission to the public house and drink samples.

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New entertainers

This year’s free entertainment will include acrobats, lumberjacks, stilt-walkers, a parrot-riding pirate and more.

Here’s a look at the performers:

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