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Party Like It’s 1799 At Pioneer Days

Festival Aug. 16–Aug. 18 At Old Fort Harrod State Park

Composite Photo
From left: Goldie Goldsmith-Vigneri cuts a rug with Klem the Clown, Larry Sanders and the Borderline Band sing up a storm, contestants line up for the watermelon eating contest and members of the Mercer County Cattlemen’s Association grilled up some goodie at last year’s Pioneer Days festival.

Robert Moore

Herald Staff

Once again it’s time to party like a pioneer. Pioneer Days runs Friday, Aug. 16, to Sunday, Aug. 18, at Old Fort Harrod State Park.

The festival is put on by the park, the Friends of Fort Harrod and the Mercer County Chamber of Commerce. Jill Cutler, executive director of the Chamber of Commerce, called the festival a labor of love.

“It is so exciting to hear how many folks tell me daily how much they love Pioneer Days,” Cutler said. “It means so much to them—it makes us proud to continue what our community members want and love.”

In addition to three days of live music by six bands and pizza, pie and watermelon eating contests, there will be vendors selling primitive decor, jewelry, cosmetics, candles, local honey and food, T-shirts, license plates and baskets. There will also be an air conditioned video trailer as well as games, food and crafts.

What follows is a schedule for all three days of the festival, listed according to time, event name and location.

There will be plenty of live music at Pioneer Days. Clockwise from left: Andrea And The Guys play Friday starting at 6 p.m., Catfish Alley play Saturday starting at noon, The Hiding play Friday starting at 8:30 p.m. and Night Flyer play Saturday starting at 8:30 p.m.

Pioneer Days Schedule

Friday Aug. 16

5 p.m.—Opening ceremony by Friends of the Fort

5:30 p.m.—Pet show by Critters Without Litters

6–8 p.m.—Live music by Andrea And The Guys on main stage

8:30–10:30 p.m.—Live music by The Hiding on main stage

10:30–11:30 p.m.—Karaoke

Saturday, Aug. 17

9 a.m.—Amazing Race registration at info booth

10 a.m–noon. Harrodsburg Cloggers.

10 a.m.–1 p.m.—Amazing Race sponsored by Kiwanis Club

10 a.m.–2 p.m. Big Jack Pearson Memorial Carshow by Central Kentucky Hotrodders

11 a.m.–5 p.m.—Children’s games and Pioneer Olympics by Pioneer Baptist Church

Noon–3 p.m.—Live music by Catfish Alley on main stage

12:45–1:15 p.m.—Eating contest sign-ups

1:30 p.m.—Pizza eating contest sponsored by Papa John’s

1:30 p.m.—Pie eating contest sponsored by Kroger

3:30 p.m.—Watermelon eating contest sponsored by Save-A-Lot

3:30–5:30 p.m.—Live music by Chris Linton on main stage

4 p.m.—Seed spitting contest

6–8 p.m.—Live music by Feral Cats on main stage

8:30–10:30 p.m.—Live music by Night Flyer (an Eagles cover band) on main stage

10 p.m.—Street Dancing

Sunday, Aug. 18

10:30 a.m.—Morning devotional service by Harrodsburg United Methodist Church

1-3 p.m.—Live music by Larry Sanders and the Borderline Band on main stage

4 p.m.—Close of festival

The Pioneer Days Festival starts 5 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 16, and closes 4 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 18, at Old Fort Harrod State Park (100 South College Street). For more information, call 734-3314 or or

The “Big” Jack Pearson Memorial Car Show, presented by Central Kentucky Hotrodders, happens on Saturday, Aug. 17, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, call 734-2364. For the full schedule, check out the ad in next week’s issue or visit the Pioneer Days of Mercer County Kentucky Facebook page.

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