Heart of Illinois Fair gearing up for 64th year

By WEEK Producer

July 12, 2013 Updated Jul 12, 2013 at 10:02 AM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- It is time to get your hands on some cotton candy and funnel cake.

The 64th Heart of Illinois Fair is just about ready to open to the public. 

On Thursday, vendors and volunteers prepped for Friday's gate opening ceremony.

This year organizers brought back some events that were new last year, including a bags tournament, barbecue cook-off and a 5-k run and walk.

"It's a little bit of an off-road experience, kind of through the fair ground out on to some of the Richwoods cross country course," said HOI Fair Director Morgan Grigsby. " So it is something a little bit different for people who are typically just used to running on the road all of the time. It gives you a little bit more scenery and also a chance to see what's at the fair this year."

The gates open at 4 p.m. Friday.

For more information on the 5K race, and a full listing of schedules and events visit HeartofIllinoisfair.com