NC Commissioner Troxler: 15th Annual Got to Be NC Festival Coming to State Fairgrounds May 17-19

The N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has big plans for May 17-19 at the Got to Be NC Festival in Raleigh, and we hope you will plan to join us for food, music, tractors, agricultural exhibits, working dog demonstrations, tractor pulls, entertainment, rides and games. Admission and parking is free. Pay as you go for food, rides and games.

  • You know when it’s May that it’s time for the Got to Be NC Festival!
  • I look forward to this event every year, because it’s a great weekend showcasing North Carolina agriculture and agribusinesses – our state’s No. 1 industry.
  • Some people like to refer to it as a mini-fair and I could see why because we have plenty of good food, rides, games and some farm animals on display.
  • But the Festival is very different in many ways. One of the first differences you may notice when you come on the grounds is the large display of antique and more modern tractors.
  • Farmers may have their favorite tractor brands, but festival goers are very likely to see every color tractor available, plus a few with custom paint jobs.
  • Two examples that come to mind are purple and gold for East Carolina University and pink one for breast cancer awareness.
  • Every day at 1 p.m., we have a tractor parade roll through the fairgrounds. It’s quite the sight and there are all sizes of tractors from small to very big.
  • This is a not-to-be missed activity.
  • Another not-to-be-missed event is the Food Lion Local Goodness Marketplace featuring over 75 Got to Be NC member companies sampling and selling their food and beverage products.
  • It’s a great way to taste some of the excellent products made here in the state.
  • On Saturday, the Carolina Pig Jig, which is a competition of around 25 Masonic lodges AND a big barbecue buffet fundraiser, starts at 11 a.m. and runs until the barbecue is gone.
  • The proceeds benefit the Masonic Home for Children in Oxford.
  • This is a popular event.
  • Also on Saturday, the N.C. Forest Service will have a birthday party for Smokey Bear at 10:30 in the Jim Graham Building.
  • While you are there, be sure to check out all the agricultural exhibits inside such as egg candling, the pig birthing exhibit, a dairy milking exhibit, hatching baby chicks, plus an area for make-and-take crafts.
  • There is even a John Deere pedal tractor course for the kids to navigate and a celebrity North Carolina turkeys Chocolate and Chip, who were pardoned at the White House in 2022.
  • Other free activities include a bike stunt show, puppet shows, a butterfly barn, musical entertainment and working dog demonstrations.
  • Admission and parking are free. Festival hours are Friday from noon to 10 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • I hope listeners will join us May 17-19 in Raleigh.