AUTUMN colours are painting the Orara Valley in shades of red and gold and firewood is being gathered, so it must be time for the 2012 Orara Valley Fair.
Sure enough, the famous annual country fair will return to the Upper Orara Recreation Ground from 10am-4pm on June 11, the Queen's Birthday public holiday Monday, as it has done for more than 30 years.
Fair president Doug Hoschke and his committee have put together a program of entertainment, events and activities to appeal to all ages.
Free circus skills workshops, sheep shearing demonstrations; a working blacksmith from Wombat Forge and working woodturners from Mid North Coast Woodturners will add to the ever-popular program of woodchopping events, working vintage farm machinery, Steve McEwan's reptile shows, the Lions jumping castle and children's races and games.
The ever-popular tractor-drawn hay rides around the river paddock will be on again, priced at just $1, and there will be carnival rides as well as Dave Gauci's pony rides and the high-flying Aero jump trampolines.
Whip cracker Brian Fahey is expected to again be on hand to teach some of his skills with the stock whip to a new generation.
The entertainment program will be led by well-known singer Errol Gray, "the backyard balladeer", who will MC the music and dance program as well as perform.
Other entertainers will range from the tiny tots of the Coffs Harbour Rhythmic Dancers through to edgy band The Black Cows.
Community radio station 2AIRFM will also have an outside broadcast van where people can put in requests.
Food of all kind will be on offer for lunch, from Moroccan specialities through to nachos, waffles and pizzas to pies, sandwiches, sausage sandwiches, ice creams, cakes and slices, coffees and teas.
A variety of market stalls and displays will also be at the fair, including a live display of noxious and environmental weeds of local concern.
Entry to the fair is $5 adults, $2 school-age children. Parking is ample and free.
The Upper Orara Recreation Reserve is located on Dairyville Rd, a scenic 15-minute drive west of Coffs Harbour via Coramba Rd and Upper Orara Rd.
All profits from the fair go to local community organisations.
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