Local News

Traffic, Parking Slow Down Treks To State Fair

Posted October 15, 2006 1:16 a.m. EDT

— Bumper-to-bumper traffic was the norm around the State Fairgrounds Saturday, where backups stretched all the way to the Beltline at Wade Avenue

  • WRAL State Fair Coverage

  • WRAL On-Time Traffic Section

    With the North Carolina State Fair, the Monet in Normandy exhibit at the North Carolina Museum of Art, the N.C. State football game, and an Eric Clapton concert at the RBC Center, large numbers of people are streaming into the West Raleigh area. Some families sat in traffic for more than an hour.

    "Really congested, yeah," said driver V. Scarboro. "But we are here to have fun. I just want to forget about the congestion and just have fun."

    Fair organizers recommended that people take

    park-and-ride shuttles

    being offered by Capital Area Transit and the Durham Area Transit Authority.

    The fair, the football game, and the concert are generating heavy traffic in both directions on the following roads:

  • I-40 between Aviation Parkway (Exit 285) and Gorman Street (Exit 295)
  • I-440 between I-40 (Exit 1) and Lake Boone Trail (Exit 5)
  • Wade Ave. between I-440 and I-40
  • Hillsborough St. between I-440 and NC 54
  • Blue Ridge Rd. between Duraleigh Rd. and Western Blvd.
  • Trinity Rd. between NC 54 and Blue Ridge Rd.
  • Edwards Mill Rd. between Blue Ridge Rd. and Trinity Rd.

    Motorists coming from areas west of Raleigh should take Exit 290 off I-40 to get to the State Fair. Motorists coming from areas east of Raleigh should take Hillsborough Street exit off of I-440 to get to the State Fair.

    The cooler weather isn't keeping people away. More than 51,000 people attended the first day of the state fair. That's down just slightly over last year's opening day. Saturday's numbers will be released on Sunday.

    New Ride Premieres At Fair

    One ride that's new to the fair is attracting a lot of attention. But bring your empty stomach and full wallet with you.

    It's called the Turbo Force, and it costs 10 tickets a ride. That's the equivalent to $7.50.

    The best way to describe it is a swinging arm that goes about 65 mph with a 3.5 G-force. People said Saturday that it's a blast, and the lines were long to get onto the ride.

    Beyond Fried Coke, Candy Apples Comes Full Steak Dinner

    The fried Coke has attracted a lot of pre-fair attention, and all the traditional staples like candy apples and elephant ears remain popular. But this year, fairgoers won't have to leave to get a full steak dinner.

    A vendor out of Illinois is offering a steak meal with all the fixings, with green beans, mushrooms, and potatoes. The stand is called the Sirloin Hut, and the best way to locate it is to look for the ostrich right next door.