Leonardtown, MD – The St. Mary’s County Fairgrounds in Leonardtown will be the bustling with activity Thursday, Sept. 20 to Sunday, Sept. 23. The 72nd annual St. Mary’s County Fair has an array of traditional activities celebrating Maryland’s Mother County. As with all the region’s county fairs, St. Mary’s County Fair is an amazing showcase for agriculture. What better way to celebrate the last days of summer and warmly welcome fall?

Here are 10 things to know before you go to the St. Mary’s County Fair.

The fair initially opens Thursday, Sept. 20 at 3 p.m. and the carnival rides begin at 5 p.m.

Admission for adults is $7, kids age 6 to 12 $1 and under 6 free. Season tickets for adults are $10 and kids 6 to 12 $2 each.

Carnival ride tickets are $1 each, 25 for $20. Discount coupons are available at county schools and online.

Her majesty the Queen of Tolerance presides over fair activities once she is crowned Thursday evening. The queen must me an unmarried female resident of St. Mary’s for at least three years, sponsored by an education organization, either a senior at a St. Mary’s County high school or a freshman at the College of Southern Maryland. She must have at least a 3.5 grade point average. The judging will take place Sept. 9 but the announcement of the candidate selected by the panel won’t be announced until opening night.

School and 4H Activities Day is Friday, Sept. 21. Students grades one to 12 are admitted free until 5 p.m. Among the highlights are a middle school band concert and a speech contest.

The Fair Parade will be held within the fairgrounds Saturday morning starting at 9:30 a.m. an array of units—trucks, tractors, marchers, mascots, local officials and more will be part of the promenade.

The Jousting Tournament is held Saturday, Sept. 22 starting at 12:30 p.m. The St. Mary’s Joust is a prelude to the Maryland State Jousting Championship in Crownsville Oct. 6 and the National Jousting Championship in Brunswick, MD Oct. 13.

Hold your horses! The equestrian events don’t end with the joust. The horse pull will be held Saturday evening. The heavyweight and lightweight competitions provide excitement for onlookers and cash prizes for winners.

The fair’s Horse Show will be held Sunday morning. It is conducted by the St. Mary’s Riding Club.

The Baby Contest is a Sunday highlight of Family Day at the fair. The agenda also includes a gospel music concert and an antique tractor pull. There’s a “ride all day” special for kids at the midway.

For more information on the 2018 St. Mary’s County Fair visit the event’s web site.

Contact Marty Madden at marty.madden@thebaynet.com