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The Black Gold Festival kicked off this past weekend with the Miss Black Gold and Miss Perry County Festival pageants held at The Forum on Sept. 11.

Last week, plans for the 40th annual Black Gold Festival kicked off with the Miss Black Gold and Miss Perry County Festival pageants at The Forum on Saturday, Sept. 11. This week, from Thursday to Saturday, Sept. 16-18, the Black Gold Festival will be held in downtown Hazard.

The entertainment schedule for the festival was recently confirmed online. All music and entertainment will be free and will be held at the amphitheater by City Hall.

On Thursday, Sept. 16, the Black Gold Planning Committee will have a recognition of their 40 year sponsors at 11:45 a.m. The Hazard High School chorus will be performing at noon, and at 1 p.m., the Children’s House Montessori will perform. At 5 p.m., Freddie Guffey and Chuck Russell will perform and the Hazard Perry Community Choir will be performing at 6:00 p.m.  At 7 p.m., Burden of Proof will perform and, at 8 p.m., Travis Napier will play.

On Friday, Sept. 17, Kelli Carey will perform at 3 p.m. and Middle Fork Grass will perform at 4 p.m. The Jordan Family Band will perform at 6 p.m., then Carla Pack and Groove Essential will perform at 7:30 p.m. Chayce Beckham, the American Idol 2021 winner, will perform at 9 p.m.

On Saturday, Sept. 18, at 3 p.m., Ashton Brett Dunn will perform, followed by High in the Saddle at 4 p.m. and Frankenberry and DJ Chung at 5 p.m. At 6 p.m., Ben Fugate will perform. Midlife Crisis will perform at 7 p.m. and Priscilla Block will perform at 8:30 p.m.

Attractions and activities that have been confirmed for the Black Gold so far include the parade, the pageant, a wrestling match and more.

The Black Gold Festival parade will be held on Saturday, Sept. 18 starting at 11:00 a.m. Participants do not have to pre-register, they can simply come to registration that day at the old Food Fair parking lot starting at 9:00 a. m. to pay the $15 entry fee and submit the application. The parade will start at East Main Pizza Hut, continue up Memorial Drive, and will end at Combs Motel. It will not go down Main St.

The following characters will be riding in the parade and then taking pictures with children after the parade in front of the Black Gold booth beside City Hall: JJ; Bluey; Sponge Bob; and Baby Yoda (subject to change because the renter had to order new hand, hopefully he gets them in on time). A schedule will be posted soon, said committee members.

Re/max Legacy Group, along with the Black Gold committee, is excited to announce the Re/Max hot air balloon will be back for the 2021 Black Gold Festival. Re/max Legacy Group will be offering free tethered rides on top of the parking structure on Thursday, Sept. 16, starting at 6:00 p.m., weather permitting.

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The Black Gold Float Competition will be held on Saturday during the parade. The competition is being sponsored by ARH, and is for Perry County and Hazard Independent Schools. The theme is “Raised on Soup beans, Cornbread, and the Black Gold.” The first place winner will receive $1,000, the second place winner will receive $750, and the third place winner will receive $500.

Envasion Gaming will be hosting the Black Gold Pop-A-Shot Challenge, Black Gold four-ball pool challenge, Black Gold Apex tournament and Black Gold Fortnite tournament throughout the festival.

Mark Comley, “America’s Funniest Magician,” will be providing free magic shows each day at noon and shows will be held every hour on the hour. Comley’s act will be located next to the Home Lumbar Bridge and is sponsored by Sykes.    

The Cincinnati Circus will be in town on Friday, Sept. 17. Performances will be starting at 6 p.m., and will feature acrobats, fire shows and the wheel of death.

Team Zoom Canine Entertainment will perform daily shows at the Triangle Park each day. Show times include 3 p.m., 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, and 1 p.m., 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Saturday. These acts are sponsored by ARH.

A free Live Pro Wrestling event will be held at 2 p.m. at the Triangle Park. This event will be sponsored by the Black Gold Committee.

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