Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell will serve as Grand Marshall for the annual parade at the Southeast Alaska State Fair Saturday, July 31.

“The fair is thrilled that the governor is going to make an appearance,” said manager Kelly Hostetler. “He’ll be in his booth Saturday, so you can come out to the fair and meet the governor.”

Republican party district chair Robert Venables said the visit reflects well on the town and the governor, who’s making his second trip here in less than a year.

“It’s good for Haines to get the exposure and it’s a good thing for people in Haines to meet the people running for office. I expect the governor will be doing what a governor or candidate wants to do most in an election year — work the crowd,” Venables said.

Headlining entertainers at the fair include the six-member Booty Band, whose funky sound combines trombone, guitar, bongos, saxophone, bass and vocals; Trampled By Turtles, a hard-driving, bluegrass-inspired band from Duluth, Minn .; Blue Scholars, a hip-hop duo from Seattle whose lyrics are at once personal, political and poetic; and solo guitar wizard Scott Huckabay.

NANDA, a troupe of four dancing, juggling, kung-fu acrobats from Washington state will perform a comedic, stunt-filled show. California Hula hoop artist Spiral, who has performed with the likes of India.Arie, Michael Franti and Spearhead, De La Soul, and the String Cheese Incident, will share her unique dance style, likely to inspire veteran and aspiring hula-hoopers.

Grammy-award winning Inuit musicians and storytellers Pamyua return to the fair’s main stage, as does Washington blues diva Michelle Fournier. Both were popular with fairgoers in 2009.

Other local and regional acts include Ketchikan’s own Ray Troll and the Ratfish Wranglers; Sasquatch Prom Date, Nicole Edwards and Dave Haddock of Whitehorse; blues-rock and reggae band the Thundercats and alt-country-rock musicians DNR of Juneau; and Haines favorites Swing Set, the Pimentos, and the HI-DE-HOs, among others.

This year’s contests include a regional talent show on July 29. Called “Southeast’s Got Talent,” the grand prize winner receives $500 and qualifies for the statewide “Alaska’s Got Talent” contest Sept. 6 at the Alaska State Fair in Palmer. The winner will get $250 for travel.

The third annual Haines Hustle fun runs are scheduled for the morning of Saturday, July 31, and include 5K, 10K, and trail half marathon routes. Entry costs $10 if runners pre-register, or $12 on event day.

Fair parade floats will be judged, and entrants are encouraged to be creative with this year’s theme: “Magic Happens at the Fair.”

Other favorite contests include Bingo; the Logging Show; a Fisherman’s Rodeo with cash prizes and gear for the fastest to mend a net or get in and out of a survival suit; the most lovable dog contest; singer-songwriter and fiddle competitions; and horseshoe, volleyball, and disc golf tournaments.

See the Fair’s website,, or pick up a fair entertainment booklet for a schedule of events.

Attractions include a food court and shopping, informational vendors, and rides, such as the antique carousel, a Ferris wheel, a mechanical bull, and, new this year, a bounce house and a bungee run. Children can make crafts at the kids’ stage or play carnival games such as the potty toss or darts nearby.

The fair’s central facility, Harriett Hall, will be filled with exhibits from around the region, including quilts and needlework; photography; fine arts; Native style arts; hobbies and crafts; school projects; crops, vegetables and flowers; and baked goods and preserved foods, among others.

A new baking contest, the Southeast Alaska State Fair Festival of Breads, is sponsored by Fleischmann’s Yeast. Prizes will be awarded to winners in the professional, senior, and junior divisions.

Exhibit entries are due July 23 or July 24, with the exception of baked goods, crops, vegetables, and flowers, which are due July 28.

McPherson Barn will lodge animals on display, including alpacas, goats, ponies, sheep, ducks, turkeys, chickens, and bunnies. Goat milking and wool carding demonstrations will be scheduled, and the state Cooperative Extension service will talk about 4-H. Residents will give talks about the role raising animals plays in living sustainably.

For information, contact the fair office at 766-2476.