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Mid-South Fair wants to stay open later

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SOUTHAVEN, Miss. (AP) — The Mid-South Fair is asking the city of Southaven to let it stay open later on Saturday nights during its 10-day run in September.

The Commercial Appeal reports (http://bit.ly/V6Lc4D ) the Southaven Board of Aldermen will hear the proposal at Tuesday night's meeting.

The fair wants an extra hour — until 1 a.m. — on Sept. 20 and Sept. 27. The fair runs from Sept. 19 through Sept. 28.

Last year, fair officials said they were inundated with crowds coming to the event on Saturday nights a few hours before the midnight closing time.

Since 2009, the fair has been held at the Landers Center in Southaven after moving from its longtime home in Memphis.

"Our attendance was up over 70 percent on that one Saturday night alone last year," said Michael Doyle, president of the Mid-South Fair board of directors. "We said we would deal with it next year about staying open a little longer. Well, next year is here."

Southaven's noise ordinance states that all outdoor music and events end at midnight on Fridays and Saturdays and 11 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays. The fair is seeking an exception from that rule.

"We are very cognizant of the city's noise ordinance and we don't want to step on anyone's toes," Doyle said. "We want to work with the city on this matter because we have a great relationship in Southaven."

Todd Mastry, executive director of the Landers Center, added, "They want to be prepared this year from what we saw last year with the crowds."

The fair is scheduled to be held at the Landers Center another five years.

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Information from: The Commercial Appeal, http://www.commercialappeal.com

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