It’s time to bust out your boots and leave room in your bellies — the Benton Franklin Fair & Rodeo kicks off Aug. 22, providing five days of fun in Kennewick.
The “Best Week of Summer” runs Aug. 22-26 at the Benton County fairgrounds.
It’ll be packed with fair favorites, from gravity-defying rides to death-defying rodeo runs and mouth-watering fare.
And watch out for some new features, from an adults-only arcade area to a post-rodeo dance.
The Grand Parade, which ushers in fair week, is at 10 a.m. Aug. 19 downtown. Kennewick Police Chief Ken Hohenberg is the grand marshal.
“It’s the last hurrah before kids go back to school. It’s when people come back to see their families. It’s where friendships are formed and lifelong traditions (celebrated),” said Lori Lancaster, executive director.
Planning to attend? Here’s what you need to know:
When, where and cost
Fair hours are 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. Aug. 22-25 and 9 a.m. to midnight Aug. 26.
Tickets are $12 for adults if purchased before Aug. 22 and $14 if purchased after.
Tickets for kids ages 6 to 12 and seniors age 65 and older are $5. Children 5 and younger are admitted for free.
Season passes are $56 for adults and $20 for kids and seniors.
On Kids Day, which is Aug. 23, kids ages 6 to 12 are admitted for $2.
Want to catch a Ben Franklin Transit shuttle to the fair? Fair/bus combination tickets are $14 for adults and $7 for kids and seniors.
Fair tickets are available at bentonfranklinfair.com, the fair office, Kennewick Ranch & Home and at the gate.
Albertsons, Safeway and Yoke’s stores also have just the fair/bus combo tickets.
The Davis Carnival hours are 2 to 11 p.m. Aug. 22, noon to 11 p.m. Aug. 23-25, and noon to midnight Aug. 26. All day carnival wristbands are $28 if purchased before Aug. 22 and $33 if purchased after.
The fairgrounds are at 1500 S. Oak St.
How to get there
Parking at the fairgrounds is $10 each day or $40 for a season pass.
Uber also will be available this year. A special offer for first-time riders — a free ride up to $15 — is available using the code BFFAIR17.
Ben Franklin Transit’s shuttles run from 9 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. to several locations: Knight Street Transit Center and Tulip Lane Park and Ride in Richland; TRAC and the 22nd Street Transit Center in Pasco; and Kamiakin High School and Lampson Stadium in Kennewick. Bus-only fares without fair admission are $1.50 per person or $4 for a family of five each way. More information: bft.org or 509-735-5100.
The popular evening concert lineup is packed this year, starting with Boyz II Men on Aug. 22.
Joan Jett & The Blackhearts will perform Aug. 23, followed by Trace Adkins on Aug. 24, Eli Young Band on Aug. 25 and War on Aug. 26.
All shows start at 7:30 p.m.
General seating is free with fair admission. Reserved seating is $15.
Reserved seats are sold out for the Joan Jett, Boyz II Men and Trace Adkins shows, but plenty of general admission seating remains.
The Horse Heaven Round Up starts at 7 p.m. each night.
General seating is free with fair admission. Reserved seating is $10.
The first four nights are qualifying rounds, culminating in the championship round on Aug. 26.
This year’s purse is $20,000 per event, putting the Horse Heaven Round Up in the top 25 rodeos in the country.
Demolition derby, Taste of the Fair and more
Several other events also are planned throughout fair week, starting with the demolition derby on Aug. 21, the evening before the fair’s first day.
Time trials start at 6:30 p.m., and the racing starts at 7:30 p.m. in the Lithia Ram Rodeo Arena on the fairgrounds. Reserved seating is $15.
The Classics at the Fair annual car show starts at noon Aug. 22.
Looking to get your grub on? Check out A Taste of the Fair from 2 to 6 p.m. Aug. 24. Food vendors will offer smaller portions of their signature items for $2 during those hours.
The Extreme Zone is returning this year, with everything from a Slingshot ride to Knockerball and laser tag set up parallel to the carnival. The area also will include a new Toxic Drop obstacle course and an early look at a 2017 Scaregrounds haunt.
Several new offerings are planned, from the Rustic Barrel Bloody Mary Bar near the rodeo arena, to a Big Game Room for adults, filled with arcade games, a jukebox and a full bar.
The wine garden near the main entrance is expanding to include a taphouse, and the Lourdes Family Rejuvenation Station near the Kids Zone will have places to relax, diaper and breastfeeding stations and rapid cell phone charging.
An all-ages dance is planned Aug. 26, following the rodeo. It’s in the rodeo arena.
Plenty more activities and attractions are being offered. For all the fair details, go to bentonfranklinfair.com.