When I was growing up we didn’t have a state fair. If we did, I didn’t know about it. We had what we called a carnival to come to town and set up in our local plaza shopping center.
Our carnivals had rides, games, and food. We really looked forward to going to it because the closest amusement park to us was Six Flags Great America. And with that being about 1 hour away, I can count on one hand how many times we went there (Six Flags).
Fast forward umpteen years, I’m now living in Florida and finally attending the Florida State Fair. When you have your states name in the title, you know you have to represent. You really must go big or go home. I’ve never been to anything like it. Last year was my family’s first time going and I think I wrote a post about how I wore the wrong shoes. I learned the hard way.
This year, I was prepared for the walk, fun and the food!
OMG the Food!
The only way they won’t suck you into eating at the fair is if you eat right before you come and get totally full. Otherwise, you’re going to want to buy and try everything you pass.
Our kids weren’t that adventurous and decided on hamburgers and chicken tenders. Right before we left the fair, they tried a funnel cake.
I didn’t eat anything because although they say, “Leave your diet at the door” when you go to the fair. I have body goals I’m trying to reach by next month.
Here are price and dates for the Florida State Fair:
Dates: February 7th – 18th
Adult – Monday through Thursday $11
Friday, Saturday, and Sunday $13
Children – ages 6-11
Monday through Thursday $6
Friday, Saturday, and Sunday $7
Parking is FREE!
Midway Ride Armbands
Weekday Armband – $25 at the gate.
Good for use only on February 7, 11, 12, 13, 14,
Any Day Armband – $35 at the gate.
Friday, Saturday, and Sunday
History of the Florida State Fair
Food and rides are great, but the Florida State Fair has so much more to offer. That first Fair was in 1904 and had simple attractions that was held in a single building on a 27-acre plot. In 1915, the South Florida Fair and Gasparilla Carnival were officially incorporated with the Secretary of State office in Tallahassee. This new Fair became known as the Florida State Fair.
In February of 1977, the first Fair was held at the location it’s still held today, near Interstate 4 and U.S Highway 301 in eastern Hillsborough County. The 330-acre site sits just seven miles from its original downtown Tampa location. Today, the 12-day Florida State Fair attracts up to 500,000 guests. Each year, Florida residents create exhibits to show off their skills in agriculture, horticulture, crafts and more. Source
More than Just Rides
The fair is an experience. If you never get on one ride, you will still have a great time. There are so many different types of shows and entertainment, that you probably couldn’t fit it all in one day. Check out the entertainment page here.
What I hate that I missed the most was the Wine and Juice competition! Who knew?! I’m so there next year.
If you’re in Florida in February, visit the Florida State Fair. Take the full day and experience everything. Oh! Wear good shoes!
Have you been to the Florida State Fair or even your local fair? What do you like most about attending?