LEBANON, Tenn. (WKRN) – The Wilson County-Tennessee State Fair begins today, August 12th, and runs through Saturday, August 21st.

It’s no secret that the fair is starting in the middle of a heatwave, which is nothing unusual for the fair or the month of August.

“Our carnival is a very active participant with us,” explained David Hale, Wilson County Tennessee State Fair Midway & General Services Chairman. “They have put up extra tents all through the carnival with benches, picnic tables for people to be able to get in the shade, get out of the sun.”

“And of course, we’re very fortunate to have Fiddler’s Grove, our historic village here where there are lots of big shade trees and you can come up and get one of those bottled soft drinks and sit back in the shade and enjoy some music and find a cool spot,” Hale pointed out.

“We have some misting tents that we will deploy as part of our program Vanderbilt Hospital and Vanderbilt Event Medicine. And of course, we have several air-conditioned buildings that we encourage people to take a break. Go inside, look through all those exhibits.”

But they also have to be prepared for storms, and in particular for lightning.

“We have a contingency plan with our carnival that establishes the frequency and distance of lightning,” Hale explained. “And as storms approach that have lighting in them, or high winds, we begin by shutting down the larger rides, the taller rides first and then progress through down through the smaller rides if necessary.”

“Of course, we have a lot of buildings that are available for folks to shelter in. And we do have some tornado plans and severe storm plans that are in the buildings themselves that are specific to each one of those buildings.”