Department of Parks
Old Fort Harrod Beef Festival Set For June 2-4
Harrodsburg, Ky. – Who grills the best steaks or hamburgers? You can find out at the first-ever Beef Festival to be held June 2-4 at Old Fort Harrod State Park and the Mercer County Fairgrounds in Harrodsburg.
On June 2, the festival will feature the Kentucky Headhunters’ performance at the Mercer County Fairgrounds, along with local bands and singers. The concert begins at with the Headhunters scheduled to take the stage around Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under.
The festival hits its full stride June 3 with a juried arts and crafts fair at Old Fort Harrod State Park, featuring more than 50 exhibitors, a steak and eggs breakfast, live music, festival food, children’s activities, craft demonstrations, pony rides, a twilight tour of the fort, a 5K race/walk, and an antique and classic car cruise in.
In addition, on Saturday, the signature event, a beef “grill off,” takes place at the fairgrounds. The chefs will compete to produce the best brisket, steak and ground beef. There also is a youth ground beef category for those ages 9 to 17. Judges will determine the winners and a “People’s Choice” award will be presented. The cost is only $5 per person to sample all the wares and vote for the best.
Other events at the fairgrounds that same day include the Ag Olympics, a 4H skillathon, chef demonstrations, antique tractor and farm machinery show, display of various breeds of live cattle, roping demonstrations, Bluegrass Ranch Horse Association’s competitions featuring roping, cutting and other exciting maneuvers with cattle horses, and more.
On Sunday, June 4, the juried arts and crafts show continues from to at Old Fort Harrod State Park with more live entertainment and children’s activities. In addition, on Sunday, the Kentucky State Flintlock Championship will take place from to at the Mercer County Fish and Game Farm. Other weekend events include the Mercer County Antique & Collectible Show and Sale, 4th Annual Pleasant Hill Antique Show & Sale, and the 68/80 Antique, Collectibles & Stuff Sale.
According to organizers, the event is being held to mark Kentucky’s emergence as a cattle-producing state. For more details about the festival, call Joan Huffman at (859) 734-9614 or 734-3314 or LeMayne Ellis at (859) 734-5546. Old Fort Harrod State Park, the Commonwealth’s first permanent settlement west of the Allegheny Mountains, is located on South College Street in Harrodsburg. Mercer County Fairgrounds, the oldest continuous Fair and Horse Show in the United States, is located at 560 Linden Avenue in Harrodsburg.
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The Kentucky State Park System is composed of 52 state parks plus an interstate park shared with Virginia. The Department of Parks, an agency of the Commerce Cabinet, operates 17 resort parks with lodges -- more than any other state. Each year, Kentucky parks draw 7 million visitors and contribute $317 million to the economy. For more information on Kentucky parks, visit our Web site at http://www.parks.ky.gov