Mat-Su Fall Festival - Must Read Alaska
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Friday, May 14, 2021
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Mat-Su Fall Festival


The summer send-off fling in lieu of the Alaska State Fair takes place at the Palmer Raceway in the Butte Aug. 28-30, 2020 from 10 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. Information can be found at 

With the cancellation of almost every large event in the State since March, Alaskans are ready and anxious to get back to business as usual, festival organizers said.

“This festival is an opportunity for a wide variety of vendors, food trucks, and performers to gather in the safety of a large, open-air venue to meet and greet their customers and to sell their products. For the public, this is an opportunity for Southcentral Alaskans to safely enjoy some of the many things they have missed out on this year due to cancelled and postponed local events like the State Fair, the Bear Paw Festival, the Highland Games, sports shows, parades, and more. This is a chance for everyone to safely enjoy the process of getting back to normal,” organizers wrote.

Various local bands will be performing throughout the festival. Schedule here.

The festival will follow CDC and the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services guidelines, organizers said.

Alaska Raceway Park was chosen for the venue because the 20 acres of wide-open area allows everyone the ability to spread out and practice safe physical distancing. Hand sanitizing stations will be located throughout the raceway park. Face coverings are encouraged and will be available free of charge for anyone wanting one.

“We are excited to allow Alaskans an opportunity to safely ease back into the Alaska social scene that we all know and love,” said Matt Rowley, owner of MATSU Events. “We’re grateful for Alaska Raceway Park’s willingness to partner with us to make this festival happen!”

The Mat-Su Fall Festival is a family-friendly event. Admission is $5, and children under 8 are free.

Donations Welcome


Written by

Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • Anchorage will be a Ghost town in the Future and the MatSu Valley will become the center of Alaska Commerce all because of little Napoleon shuttling the city down.

  • I love the line, “Face coverings are encouraged.” So, folks will be trusted to do what they feel is best for them. They won’t be depending on an elected politician for health advice/mandate or fearing self-appointed fear mongers enforcing those politicians’ mandates.

    • Face coverings are not about protecting ourselves. We wear them to prevent the spread of the virus from us, potential asymptomatic carriers, to the other people around us. Ignorant people like you are why a state mandate us needed.

      • For the 8000 time, there are no asymptomatic carriers. Even the CDC and WHO agree on that. It was all a big lie from Italy that was debunked months ago.

      • You are the one who remains willfully ignorant. The science has spoken. All randomized controlled trials have found there is NO statistical difference, no measurable advantage to wearing a mask versus not wearing a mask. On July 31st, released guidelines to state health departments from the CDC acknowledged that researchers lacked evidence that “masks offer any protection against coronavirus.” Any, at all. Even the warning on the side of a box of surgical face masks explicitly states, “This product will not provide any protection against COVID-19 (Coronavirus) or other viruses.” Stop with the self-righteous virtue-signaling to inflate your own ego while falsely accusing others of moral wrong-doing based on nothing more than your irrational fear.

      • Sooo… face coverings only work one way then… they only stop the virus on the exhale not the inhale…? That makes ZERO sense if you actually stop and think about it. Your average “face covering” is just standard fabric that should be equally (in)effective on the exhale as the inhale, it’s not a one-way valve or anything special like that. If it works on the exhale… then it should work on the inhale as well… right? So if you want to wear a mask to “protect” yourself then go right ahead and do so, but don’t expect me to wear one when I can practice social distancing…

      • Unless you wear a respirator you aren’t protecting yourself or anybody else, look up the size of a typical virus molecule and tell me I’m wrong.

  • It would be great if someone set up a booth to sell Trump 2020 signage, and flags ect.
    Just a late idea!

    • There will be. If you can, enlarge the poster above and you will see a box advertising as such. ?

  • Wait for it, all the butt hurt haters will come out and whine because some of us choose to LIVE instead of hide under the bed in fear.

    • Actually the vintage market was a huge success at fairgrounds and the raceway has already had a couple big events that were very successful with loads of people present. This will likely be much the same. You should drive out and attend! ?

  • So proud of the Alaskans setting this up and doing this, from the promoters to the vendors to the patrons. So nice to see a group of people that trusts their fellow Alaskans, instead of wanting to control or depress them.

    • How do you know that everyone in a large gathering has tested negative? It’s not about trust. Whether you have the virus or not has nothing to do with how you feel. It has everything to do with testing. If everyone was tested regularly then we would know who is safe and who isn’t. Negative people could go about their lives like normal, while positive people stayed home.

      • Asymptomatic transmission of the current flu virus, from which 99.96% recover, is extremely rare. But, if you want to live in a utopian universe where everything is 100% “safe” and where people are not free, stay home.

      • The virus test kits used are prone to errors and can produce false positive and false negative results. Moreover, the official virus test was not clinically validated due to time pressure and may sometimes react positive to other common coronaviruses.

  • If you are foolish enough to believe there is a dangerous virus and you think it’s safe to wear a mask, do NOT attend this festival. This is a celebration where real Alaskans can enjoy some beers, dance, party and do whatever is fun. Seeing a mask will send a message of fear and will not be tolerated. The attire will be camo, a red hat, and the American flag. Bring your Second Amendment rights and display them proudly. Liberals are not welcome

  • Give me Liberty or Give me a 0.03% chance of Death!

  • Excellent to see. I wish I were able to attend.

  • Went today and had lunch there, the Russian Food truck was very good. Only thing wrong is there are no tables to eat at.

  • Was this the first good news from 2020? Free parking, $5 admission, and tons of LOCAL vendors. What a nice change from the overpriced and stale old State Fair. Was so nice to go out and do something that felt like the community was alive again! Well done guys!

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