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State fair fare? Try a deep-fried Honey Bun

By Andrea Weigl
andrea.weigl@newsobserver.com

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  • State fair fare? Try a deep-fried Honey Bun
  • State fair fare? Try a deep-fried Honey Bun
  • Here's how to find the new foods at this year's N.C. State Fair:

    Bacon and cheese mashed potato bites , $6. Chef D'lites, a yellow truck across from women's bathroom next to grandstand. This stand also serves deep-fried chocolate chip cookie dough, chicken-fried bacon and deep-fried macaroni and cheese.

    Beignets, $5. Ragin Cajun booth, outside grandstand. Also serves alligator on a stick, chicken gumbo, Cajun-fried crawfish tails and Cajun-fried turkey wings.

    Deep-fried Chips Ahoy! cookies, $5. Available at Murphy House concessions at 1853 Grille, inside the Scott and Education buildings and outside at the grandstand. The cookie melts into the deep-fried dough.

    Deep-fried Honey Bun, $5. Available at Murphy House concessions at 1853 Grille, Scott and Education buildings and outside at the grandstand. This item will please Honey Bun fans.

    Giant gummy bear, $25. Available at the World's Largest Gummy Bear booth, east side of Dorton Arena across from Field of Dreams. It also sell a fair bear on a stick for $5 in lemon, cherry cola, cherry and 10 other flavors, as well as edible shot glasses, $10 for a six-pack.

    Gourmet Funnel Cakes, $5. The Gobblin' Gourmet on east side of Dorton Arena near the Field of Dreams. Owner Robin Smith uses brownie batter to make her chocolate funnel cakes, which come in such flavors as turtle brownie, pecan praline, black forest, blueberry bump, chocolate obsession and American pie.

    Grilled peanut butter and banana sandwich, $5. McBride's tent across walkway between Graham building and Exposition Center. A grilled peanut butter and banana sandwich dusted with cinnamon and sugar.

    Koolickles, $3. Available at Murphy House concessions at 1853 Grille, inside the Scott and Education buildings and outside at the grandstand. A dill pickle marinated in cherry Kool-Aid.

    Krispy Kreme bacon cheeseburger, $6. Available at Murphy House concessions at 1853 Grille, inside Scott and Education buildings and outside at the grandstand. Also available at Michael and Sheila Beaver's stand across from the church lunch stands. We advise you not to add lettuce, tomato or condiments.

    Maple bacon cupcake, $3, or 2 for $5. BlueBird Cupcakes, located inside Kerr Scott Building. Other flavors include caramel apple, red velvet, s'mores, pumpkin spice, vanilla and snickers.

    One pound hot dog, $12. Joe's Big Dogs, outside Graham building, across from large inflated kangaroo. It comes with chili, coleslaw and potato roll. Also available as half-pound or quarter-pound hot dogs for $9 and $6, respectively.

    Texas Fried Frito Pie, $7. Steph's Strawberries, across from the Hobbies and Craft building with a large strawberry balloon on top. This dish won the best taste award at this year's Texas State Fair.

    Twinkie log, $3. At the Iced Tea Lady's booth near Graham building. A chocolate-covered frozen Twinkie rolled in nuts, sprinkles or coconut, or served plain.


  • Today at the State Fair

    Hours: The fairgrounds are open from 8 a.m. to midnight.

    Cost: Tickets are $8 for adults, $3 for children ages 6 to 12. Children 5 and younger and seniors 65 and older are admitted free. Dorton Arena concerts and grandstand events require an additional admission fee.

    Tonight's concert: The band Honor Society at 7:30 p.m. in Dorton Arena. Cost is $5.

    Parking and traffic: Free parking is available at Carter-Finley Stadium. But traffic is expected to be bad around the fairgrounds because financial guru Dave Ramsey is holding an event at the RBC Center from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. The state Highway Patrol recommends those going to the fair take Interstate 440, N.C. 54 or Hillsborough Street to Blue Ridge Road, or take Wade Avenue to Blue Ridge to Trinity Road. Those going to the RBC Center should take Interstate 40 to Wade Avenue to Edwards Mill Extension. Parking will not be allowed on Wade Avenue, Blue Ridge Road, Hillsborough Street, Trinity Road and Youth Center Road.

    Take the bus: Capital Area Transit provides bus service from two park-and-ride lots: the WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary and the ITB Holdings Building on Wake Forest Road in Raleigh. The Durham Area Transit Authority provides bus service from the downtown Durham station on the hour. On Saturdays and Sundays, Triangle Transit offers bus service from the Eubanks Road lot in Chapel Hill and the Regional Transit Center in RTP.

    Follow the blog: Check our State Fair blog at blogs. newsobserver.com/ncstatefair/home



RALEIGH After taking a bite of a Krispy Kreme bacon cheeseburger, Adrian Yirka, 28, of Raleigh, delivers his verdict on the latest sugary, greasy treat to be found at the N.C. State Fair.

"I like it," Yirka tells his co-workers. "I never would have thought that. It's sweet, salty, a good combination."

Another fairgoer won over by the latest can-you-believe-it food to hit the fairgrounds.

Each year, vendors try to outdo each other by battering, deep-frying or otherwise concocting what they hope will be the "it" food at the fair. Beyond the bacon cheeseburger served between two Krispy Kreme glazed doughnuts, other contenders this year include a 1-pound hot dog, a 5-pound gummy bear, a deep-fried Honey Bun, deep-fried Chips Ahoy! cookies and dill pickles marinated in cherry Kool-Aid , otherwise known as "Koolickles."

For many fairgoers, food is the main attraction.

"I came here for one purpose - it's to eat," said Jesse Smith of Dunn, who was visiting the fair with his wife, Ava.

The Smiths already have a long list of things they must eat the fair: a ham biscuit, a funnel cake, a Polish or Italian sausage and N.C. State University ice cream.

For other food traditionalists, all the old favorites are back this year, served up in the same spots by the same churches and civic groups.

But those willing to be a little more daring can try a grilled peanut butter and banana sandwich - otherwise known as the Elvis special. It's another new treat at this year's fair.

John Pastor, 31, of Chapel Hill, was willing to try one.

"It tastes like peanut butter and jelly without the jelly and lots of peanut butter," he says. "What I didn't expect was the cinnamon and sugar."

Pastor came with Patty Melendez, 33, of Chapel Hill, to eat his way through the fair. "We bring $50 in small bills just for food," Pastor said.

While he liked the Elvis special, he's not so convinced about the Krispy Kreme burger.

"I don't know that I can go there," he said. "I like my doughnuts with milk and my burgers with soda."

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