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Go Catch Some Raye

Those going to the Spokane Interstate Fair expecting a week-long music extravaganza thick with headliners will be disappointed. But the annual event will have plenty of activity for those who see the entertainment as a component to blend with the food, carnival, animals and agricultural displays for a well-rounded experience.

Country music fans will want to plan to stay on at the fair Saturday evening because that’s when the big-name entertainer - country singer Collin Raye - will perform at 6:30 p.m. on the South Stage. The performance is free with admission to the fair.

Three of Raye’s albums have gone platinum and “Love, Me,” from his debut album “All I Can Be” spent three weeks on the top of the Billboard Country Singles chart. Three of his singles have been nominated for the Country Music Association Song of the Year award.

Many of his songs include messages about children and he looks to his own for inspiration.

“My priority is my children,” says Raye, who schedules his appearances so he is able to be home for significant events and milestones in his children’s lives.

“They’re the most valuable thing - and I do what I do because of them. That helps me set my priorities and keep my eye on the right stuff,” Raye says.

“I know that these songs are going to be around a lot longer than I am. If I can find songs that really say something about how people live their lives, whether it’s about blowing off steam or surviving the loss of a loved one, then I’ll leave music behind my children can be proud of.”

Raye won’t be the lone performer at the fair, however. Among those who will appear throughout the run of the event are singer Webb Wilder, hypnotist Mark Yuzuik and South American folk music group Viento de los Andes.

Coltrain, a band that formed in 1976 and performs at numerous rodeos and fairs, will also appear throughout the week.

All of the performances are included in admission to the fair.

Those preferring entertainment that includes bucking broncs and bullriders will want to attend the fair the last four days - Sept. 11-14 - when the PRCA Rodeo will be held at 7:30 each night in the Grandstand Arena.

, DataTimes ILLUSTRATION: Photo