Officials with the Arkansas State Fair on Tuesday offered up a preview of the 2013 festivities, which includes concerts by The Charlie Daniels Band and Everclear and fried treats ranging from Twinkies to alligator.
The 2013 fair begins Friday and continues through Oct. 20.
On Tuesday, workers assembled various rides on the grounds while concession crews fried up and presented samples of some of the food items that will be on this year's fair menu.
Among them were fried jello, chocolate-dipped twinkies, a fried mystery product that was said only to possibly contain nuts and a "mega burger" with four half-pound patties, eight slices of bacon, 8 ounces of chili, two kinds of cheese and an array of onion rings.
The creator, Tom Lyons of T&J Food Service, said the humongous delicacy was developed in part because burgers have enjoyed a "huge comeback" in recent years.
"We just kept looking at different ones and we're always trying to get a new food item for the fair, so a few suggestions and we came up with this," Lyons said.
Jackie's Mobile Cafe will offer for the first time pork chop sundaes: fried pieces of pork chops and homemade vanilla ice cream and various sugary toppings.
"This is a family secret, we do it it for every birthday," said Khadijah Williams, who offered samples of the unusual taste combination Tuesday. "It's really good. It's like when saltiness meats sweetness. It's the best."
The fair is bringing back a promotion this year in which entry is free during the week from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to let visitors sample the various treats without having to pay admission.
General Manager Ralph Shoptaw said he expects a big crowd in part because of the wide array of food options.
"This is a food fair," he said.
On the entertainment front, Charlie Daniels takes the stage Friday night, and Everclear plays Oct. 19. Other performers scheduled are 38 Special on Saturday night, Johnny Gill on Oct. 18 and Ginuwine on Oct. 17. All concerts are free with fair entry.
Other attractions include a Bengal tiger tamer and professional bull riding on Oct. 18 and 19. Separate tickets are required for the latter.