BIG CROWDS - More than 20,000 people took in Westerner Days on Thursday. Westerner Days runs through until Sunday in Red Deer. Todd Colin Vaughan/Red Deer Express

Westerner Days sees large crowds on second day

Rain didn’t stop Red Deerians from enjoying the sights

The second day of Westerner Days Fair & Exposition saw the community come together in celebration for McDonald’s Kids’ Day, despite the rain that came down in the evening. Over 20,000 people entered the grounds to test out the rides, eat some fair food in the Grub Hub, and check out classic rockers Chilliwack and Kim Mitchell in the ENMAX Centrium.

The concert was clearly a Red Deer favourite. It kicked off at 8 p.m. with 3,400 fans crowding the stands to see Chilliwack. Not long after, co-headliner Kim Mitchell took the stage, finishing the show off with a standing ovation.

Tonight’s ENMAX Centrium main stage show is Tom Cochrane with Red Rider, with openers Jamie Woodfin and Ken Stead. Fair-goers can get free reserved floor seating by going to the Tickets Alberta Box Office in the lobby of the ENMAX Centrium at 4 p.m. today. These tickets are free with gate admission.

The Grub Hub has been a busy place this year, where attendees can chow down on all of the carnival classics, like corn dogs and mini donuts. A favourite this year is The Smokehouse, which offers mountains of meat sandwiches to fill your belly and delight your taste buds.

Fair attendees can win Grub Hub cash by participating in the Openhwy ‘Come Together and Get Social’ contest. While here, use #WesternerDays and #TicketsAlberta when posting on social media to win daily prizes. If you are a winner, we will notify you day of to pick up your prize at the Guest Services booth.

Visitors should make sure to visit the various livestock areas on the grounds. Check out the Red Deer Motors North American Pony Chuckwagon Championships at 6 p.m. daily (except on Sunday, when they are at 2 p.m.), or stop into The Little Red Barn and visit the petting zoo. Be sure to participate in the Peavy Mart Ag-Mazing Scavenger Hunt, where guests can be entered to win the Ultimate Urban Farm Experience prize package. Details are available at westernerdays.ca/information/raffles.

In addition to regular fair activities, some of the Westerner Days entertainers went to the Red Deer Regional Hospital and Ronald McDonald House to ‘Share the Fair’, presented by Olymel, a program designed to bring a taste of the fair to children who may not be able to attend due to an illness. Doo Doo the Clown, Bandaloni, and The Magic of Aaron Matthews participated.

“Most of the time the kids entertain me as I’m entertaining them,” said Bandaloni, the One Man Band. “(It raises my spirits to see the kids) however, it’s nice to see that there’s not many children here, which is a great thing.”

For more information, including event schedules, visit westernerdays.ca.