The 71st annual Kenai Peninsula Fair was in full swing Friday at the Kenai Peninsula Fairgrounds in Ninylchik.
Stalls, vendors and food carts lined the walkways and filled one large indoor space, but the brighter attractions included a wide array of performers and events scattered around the fairgrounds.
Pig races took place every hour or so, allowing fans to place bets on pigs released onto a small revolving track. Young volunteers will chase those pigs that are less focused.
The two main stages, the Ocean Stage and the Inlet Stage, featured a changing line-up of performers. It was mostly from Alaska, although there was some national talent as well. It included a magical performance, a fiddle, lots of guitars and a performance by Yale University’s Whiffenpoofs a cappella group.
One standout was Silas Jones, a 16-year-old from Homer who played both original songs and arrangements entirely on a single acoustic guitar—slapping, scratching and otherwise making sounds to mimic a larger soundscape.
The crowd, including members of the Whiffenpoofs, gathered around the Inlet Stage during his performance, laughing and applauding as Jones tackled technical challenges and entertained the crowd with his theatrics and lively moves.
A large metal globe was installed in the back corner of the fairgrounds for performances by the intrepid Flores family, a family of daredevils who ride in it on dirt bikes. Three children, ages 8 to 19, took part in most of the action, while their father was the host and entertained the crowd at the microphone.
At the end of the evening, there was a rodeo featuring horse and bull riders from around the state for barrel racing and a Beauty and the Beast competition.
The Kenai Peninsula Fair continues Saturday and Sunday with new pig races, performances by the intrepid Flores family and musical performances. The Home Free concert will take place on Saturday night at 7:00 p.m.