MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – It's official: The Horry County Fair will be coming to the Myrtle Beach Speedway in April, after being delayed last year due to issues with a special event permit for the fair.
"At first it was something that I felt we needed, but then, after we announced it last year, I saw the excitement," said Steve Zacharias, owner of Myrtle Beach Speedway and the coordinator of the Horry County Fair. "I knew it was something that was necessary."
The Horry County Fair will run from April 15 to 24, and will feature rides, concerts, a "Battle of the Bands," special deals, and more, according to the Myrtle Beach Speedway website.
The most recent fair held in Horry County was held in Loris in 2009, but an official "Horry County Fair" has not been registered since 1997.
In March of 2015, organizers were forced to delay the fair until April 2016 in order to comply with the county's ordinance for a special event permit.
"I am very disappointed that this year's Horry County Fair has to be postponed, but am excited to have the proper time to work with the Horry County officials and the SC State Police to put the proper plan in place that will ensure a smooth and successful event for everyone in 2016," Zacharias said in March of 2015.
The special events permits limit events to seven days in Horry County, which Zacharias said isn't enough time to have a successful fair.
In November 2015, Horry County council members passed an ordinance allowing temporary community events, such as fairs, to be exempt from special events permitting limitations.
Instead, a public hearing is held in front of the zoning board of appeals whose members then determine the appropriate length of time for the event.
The zoning board of appeals approved the event at a meeting Monday night.
Zacharias is now working to get the vendor permits and coordinate with Horry County Fire Rescue to have emergency responders on site, but he said he can confidently tell the public they'll be able to go to a local fair right here this year.
"It was a very long process. We're going on yesterday getting the final approval for the dates and the time, but I think it's going to be well worth it at the end," he said. "When this is all said and done I think the town is really going to enjoy having the fair back."
View the complete fair schedule here: