HARRISBURG, Pa. — Thousands of animals, farm product competitions and local food are among the many attractions awaiting visitors to the 2011 Pennsylvania Farm Show.
Set for Jan. 8-15 at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex and Expo Center, the eight-day show will feature 6,000 animals, 10,000 competitive exhibits and 290 commercial exhibitors. It is the largest indoor agricultural exhibition in the United States.
As a pre-show appetizer, the PA Preferred Reception Jan. 7 will feature stations offering tastings of Pennsylvania-produced foods and beverages.
Many new attractions will be added to the 2011 Farm Show, including:
• “Parade of Agriculture”: During the opening ceremonies Jan. 8, representatives from each Farm Show department along with state commodity representatives will parade through the Large Arena;
• New commodity exhibits: As part of the complex renovations, new commodity cases will be relocated into the Main Hall to better showcase the variety and quality of the state’s agricultural products;
• New butter sculpture case: An octagonal case will provide a 360-degree view of the design and will be unveiled with the unique sculpture;
• Live TV taping: The U.S. Farm Report, a weekly, syndicated TV news program, will be taped from the Farm Show Expo Hall stage on Wednesday, Jan. 12;
• “Green” improvements: A newly completed, $3.6 million energy savings renovation project includes more energy efficient lighting fixtures, motors and heaters, water-saving devices, and solar systems that provide supplemental hot water and generate energy for the complex.
• Celebrity Draft Horse Team Driving: Celebrity teams will compete in a draft horse team driving competition Tuesday, Jan. 11.
• “Agricadabra”: A high-energy, educational agricultural magic show will be offered each day of the show for kids of all ages.
Returning show highlights include:
• PA Preferred Culinary Connection: In addition to cooking demonstrations, Bravo! TV’s “Top Chef” contestants Ed Cotton and Tiffany Derry and the “World’s Fastest Omelet Maker,” Howard Helmer, will delight visitors.
• VIP Dairy Showmanship Contest: Farm Show dairy exhibitors will partner with state legislators to test their dairy showmanship skills Jan. 12.
• Energy Exhibit: The renewable energy exhibit will highlight well-established and exciting new alternative energy sources helping lower energy costs for families and businesses, clean the environment, and strengthen Pennsylvania’s national security by reducing dependence on foreign oil.
• Farm Show Favorites: The annual butter sculpture, Sheep-to-Shawl contest and the high school rodeo will be featured attractions, along with the many baking contests like the Hershey’s chocolate cake contest.
• The Pennsylvania Farm Show runs from Jan. 8-15 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Admission is free and parking is $10.
The Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex and Expo Center is easily accessed from nearby Interstate 81. For a complete schedule of Farm Show events, visit www.farmshow.state.pa.us and select the tab for “2011 Show.”