People and fairground rides

Top 8 State Fairs in USA Across September and October

Sep 01,2021read

Since August, it’s been that time of year where the Ferris wheel lights turn on, the corn dog oil gets heated up and the midway is ready to entertain the scores of families who love this incredible American tradition

Yes, it’s State Fair time, and to celebrate we are listing our favorite top 8 State Fairs (in no particular order!) that we can’t wait to get back to that you haven’t missed out on yet! 

It’s been a strange 18 months, so whilst it’s incredible that state fairs are happening once again, do be mindful of any guidelines they have in place to keep you and your family safe.

8. Arkansas State Fair

Arkansas State Fair

Little Rock, October 15 to 24

The Arkansas State Fair’s Midway features over 60 exciting carnival rides, so whatever age your kids or thrill level they are at, there will be something for them! From slides, and flumes, to balloon races, lollipop swings, toon town for the little ones, the rock and roll screamer for the older kids….shall we go on? Haunted mansions, mega drops, funhouse, zero-gravity rides….you name it, you can enjoy it here!  Not to mention a host of entertainment and of course livestock to fill those days with all the state fair fun you could want, plus food ranging from the deep-fried to the super sweet…yum! T

7. South Carolina State Fair

South Carolina State Fair

Columbia, October 13 to 24

It’s YOUR moment at the South Carolina State Fair! This superfamily friend fair has a range of rides for all the family, including a whole section of kids rides for those smaller amusement park lovers in the family (make sure you stop on the fun carousel!). Check out the Main Street Entertainment section for some great family fun, before heading over to the thrill rides for the older kids, and of course that classic state fair Ferris wheel! Did we mention there is a daily circus too?  Allow some time for the animals, where kids can enjoy time in the petting zoo, alongside rabbits, chickens, pigs, and even alpacas! Kids also get a kick out of the pig race too. Super cute! One thing we love about the South Carolina State Fair is the Skyglider that can take you from one side of the fair to the other, giving you an incredible birds-eye view of the entire park!

6. Arizona State Fair

Arizona State Fair 

Phoenix, October 2 to 30

The Arizona State Fair has been entertaining families since 1905 - that’s over 100 years! Families from all over the state and beyond come here to enjoy the richness and diversity of communities, to celebrate the past and explore the future, through this wonderland of rides, delicious food, and great family values.  Some of the rides that await are the Wild River, the G Force, and the Endeavor - not to mention the iconic LA Grand XL Ferris wheel.  The fairground also features the Coliseum, which has been visited by Elvis himself! his state fair is on of the later fairs, so it’s great if you are doing the rounds and want to end the state fair season in style. 

5. Kansas State Fair

Kansas State Fair

Hutchinson, September 10 to 19

Celebrating all things Kansas, the Kansas State Fair is set on 280 acres of grounds, and you can only imagine how many rides and activities you can fit in there! Kansas State Fair started as an infant local fair all the way back in 1873 and today has grown into a place where thousands visit each year.  With the most delicious foods, and plenty of entertainment for when you need a break from all the rides - including roving acts, dancers, free concerts plus contests too. As for the rides? Well, where do we start!? From the bullet train to the classic tilt a whirl, teacups to the heart-stopping Pharaohs Fury….there are mazes, rings of fire, tornados, and helicopters…everything you could want no matter how old the kids. 

4. Virginia State Fair

Virginia State Fair

Doswell, Sept 24 to Oct 3

One thing we love about the Virginia State Fair is that they have TWO midways! They have The Midway Madness for the bigger kids, who kids love those action-packed thrill rides. Then, you have the Midway which is perfect for a more gentle family experience, with kiddie-sized thrills great for those little ones. When it comes to rides, you won’t be missing anything! There is a zipper, the heart-stopping fireball, the challenging cliffhanger, and the daring rip tide.  Stomachs will churn on the Zero Gravity ride, or kids can race friends on the Super Slide. For those younger kids, there are teacups, trains, elephants, and tractors…all great practice until they are old enough to take on the Midway Madness! With free entertainment, animals, competitions, and even a heritage village (not to mention all the delicious food that awaits!), it’s a super fun experience not to miss. 

3. Florida State Fair

Florida State Fair

Tampa, Feb 10 to 21, 2022

What’s great about the Florida State Fair is that once all the other fairs around the country have finished, and the holiday season has come and gone, and you’re missing that Giant Wheel and wishing you were back in a midway - Florida State Fair comes around! We’ve talked about the rides for other state fairs, but for the Florida State Fair, we’re going to talk about the food! Have you heard of Gelato Nachos? Well, it’s Gelato tacos AND tacos made from a dutch recipe, and you have to see it to believe. One of the favorites with kids is the Cookie Pail, which is literally a bucket of the most delicious cookies you will ever taste. If you had to guess what the Pig Rig was, what would you think? If you guessed a grilled cheese sandwich stuffed with BBQ Pulled pork AND Mac N Cheese, you’d be right! The loaded tater burger is heaving with delicious toppings including cottage fries, and ever tried a pizza with JUST dill pickles as a topping? Here is your chance! Don’t miss the very Floridian Sticky Pig - which is two Krispy Kreme doughnuts and key lime ice cream frozen, then dipped in chocolate and rolled in graham cracker. Tuck in!

2. North Carolina State Fair

North Carolina State Fair

Raleigh, October 14 to 24

The North Carolina State Fair started life back in 1853 when the fair was only 4 days long, and 4,000 keen folks attended. It wasn’t until 1888 that electricity was used at the fair and 1891 that the first midway ride appeared (can you imagine the fair before such a time!?) Since then the fair has grown to welcome over a MILLION visitors some seasons, where they can enjoy a host of classic state fair rides from the thrilling Delusion, to the kooky Cuckoo Fun House and thrilling air raid.  This state fair has a host of animal-related entertainment including livestock competitions and horse shows, and also celebrates local state farm  families who are so important to the local economy.  There is even a chance to immerse yourselves in history, as kids can check out antique farm machinery, as well as enjoy some time at the popular Village of Yesteryear, where you can watch crafters spin wool into yarn, turn pottery, and discover Native American crafts too. Of course, there is plenty of amazing music and incredible food to be enjoyed too!

1. Texas State Fair

Texas State Fair

Dallas, Sept 24 to Oct 17

The Texas State Fair is THE original state fair, and is so iconic it’s all worth a visit and luckily - there are still a few weeks before it begins so you have time to make plans to get there. The fair was established in 1886, and since then has been great at promoting Texas and everything that make it so special. In fact, the fair is so iconic it’s actually registered as a National Historic Landmark.  The fair runs for 24 days, making it also the longest running-fair in the entire USA, AND one of the largest.  The iconic Midway features over 70 rides including the Texas Star Ferris wheel, and the Dentzel Carousel dating back to 1914. Similar to other fairs, this fair also has a Thrillway for the older kids, and the Midway for the little ones, so you know there is something for all in the family no matter what age.  Don’t miss a ride on the Texas Skyway that gives you breathtaking views of Fair Park, taking you 1800ft between stations. In addition to the rides, there are rodeos, as well as family shows, and plenty of animals that the kids will just love to say hi to! The Birthing Barn is particularly an experience because kids can see life unfold right in front of their eyes.   We haven’t even begun telling you about the food yet! From award winning favourites to new flavours each year, there is plenty to sink those deep-fried loving sweet toothed taste buds into! Everything is BIG in Texas - and this incredible state fair is no different! Yeehaw!

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