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STATE FAIR: Big leap, new foods attracting fair visitors

One of the new thrills at the State Fair of Virginia is a chance to jump—without a parachute—about three stories into a big soft, inflatable cushion.

And it costs just $10.

“It just looks cool,” said Logan White, 10, who also said he wasn’t scared.

Logan and his step-brother, Hunter Moison, 14, of King George, were brave enough to try it.

Moison also said it was fun and seems a lot higher than it is but he’s not scared of heights.

Cool weather and good crowds welcomed opening-night visitors to the fair, which runs through Oct. 6 at The Meadow Event Park in Caroline County.

For that $10 jump fee, you actually get two jumps—a practice leap off a 14-foot platform before the big 27-foot jump off a platform.

Joe Baker, of Spotsylvania, also took the dive.

He said it was more fun than he expected.

“The practice is a disappointment, but the higher one is fun,” he said.

Jesse Stultz, the manager of “the U.S. Airbag” said the attraction has been popular the first day of the fair.

He said the jump gives the feeling of being a stunt man.

If extreme jumping isn’t something you’d like to try, maybe extreme eating is.

Some of the more unusual offerings of this year’s fair are a doughnut burger and a pork parfait, served up by Porky’s.

Owner Nancy Miller said her son comes up with the ideas for the unique combinations.

A glazed doughnut is split in half and warmed on a grill. Then, a patty with white cheese is slipped in between the halves of the doughnut and topped with bacon.

Marcus Jackson, of Richmond, gave the doughnut burger a taste.

“It was different. I really wanted to try something new,” he said.

He said it was a good combination and he would get it again.

The pork parfait is mashed potatoes, barbecue sauce and shredded pork layered like a parfait.

Miller said it’s been popular at other fairs.

If neither extreme food nor extreme thrills are your thing, there is always Young MacDonald’s Farm—full of baby animals and a live birthing center.

Two Alpacas, Jax and Romeo, are a little shy, but if you’re gentle, they’ll let you pet them.

There are also baby ducklings that take turns sliding down a slide into water.

Earlier in the day, the Caroline Sheriff’s Office unveiled its newest vehicle—an armored personnel carrier.

It’s military surplus and was shipped to Caroline from Nevada. A company called VSE Corp. in Caroline donated the parts and the time it took to restore it.

It holds 10 people and Caroline can use it for its SWAT team.

Because the time and restoration was donated, it didn’t cost Caroline taxpayers anything.

It’s placed near the entrance to the fair, just inside the gate, and drew the attention of several fair-goers when they arrived.

Robyn Sidersky: 540/374-5413



WHAT: State Fair of Virginia

WHERE: The Meadow Event Park, Doswell. Parking at Meadow Event Park is free.

WHEN: Through Sunday, Oct. 6. Hours: Friday and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sundays through Thursdays 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.


  • $12 for adult general admission (ages 13 and up) Monday through Thursday, $15 Friday through Sunday. $8 for youth (ages 5–12) and senior general admission Monday through Thursday; $10 Friday through Sunday. Children ages 4 and under are free with the purchase of an adult ticket.
  • Single-day unlimited-ride wristbands are $21 each. On Oct. 1, fair-goers can purchase the unlimited-ride wristband for $12. Oct. 3 will be Dollar Thursday, when all rides will require a single ticket. Season passes will be available for $30 at the gate.