We did things a little differently last year but... we are back to our old ways and are ready to celebrate together again! The Arizona State Fair’s combination of the familiar and the “who knew?” fantastic sets up a treasure map of exploration for every fun finder. Thrill seekers set ride records on the Galaxy Coaster, until they discover utter hilarity during the Turkey Stampede or Pigeon Rolling. Additionally, the pie eating contestants become hypnotized (literally!) inside the Magic Show. These crossover discoveries explain why over 1 million Arizona residents attend the Arizona State Fair every year, no doubt determined to hear the roar of the engines inside the Monster Truck shows, followed by the Figure 8 Racing. Here’s a look at what every fairgoer might find, from the familiar to the futuristic, at this year’s Arizona State Fair.
The Arizona State Fair is jam packed with rides and games sure to delight every member of the family! From small rides for the tikes to insane gravity defying plunges for the bigger kids and the young at heart, the Arizona State Fair has got family fun covered with over 60 rides and games for the family to choose from.
When your slogan is “anything deep-fried on a stick” you’re willing to go pretty deep. Fairgoers certainly come for their annual foray into fried candy bars, cheesecake and cookie dough, Flaming Cheetos creations, among dozens of other options, but they also discover a culinary quotient inside the time-honored cooking contests. Pie bakers and cupcake decorators are joined by salsa inventors and, of course, chili concocters. A mac-n-cheese, among other casseroles, bake off surprises samplers with a new take on a familiar standard, a “look what I found!” theme quite like the Fair itself.
There is something so indelible about the Arizona State Fair, especially if you visited as a teenager. Often this is the first time you ventured with friends on your own for the day, a safe environment to make your own entertainment choices. Watching a teen or tween outgrow a ride only to be entranced with the newest and scariest age-appropriate thrill is a rite of passage here. Just ask those who can still vividly recall when they graduated from the Ferris Wheel with their parents to their version of Freestyle with their friends.
Just like when a city kid watches in wonder as a country kid milks her goat, urban adults are reminded about the significance of the farm when visiting agricultural exhibits at the Arizona State Fair. While exploring the barn may not be the primary reason for attending the fair from the metropolis, we come away educated about the modern farm, having gained a new appreciation for one of the most important vocations in our country. Like those two teens who’ve discovered they aren’t so different after all, special conversations arise when speaking with the stewards of sheep, cattle, goats and other livestock. Of course, youngsters love the Great American Petting Zoo, but teens to grandparents also get a certain thrill when treated like a human saltlick by a well-intentioned cow. The annual Sale of Champions, an auction of animals raised by 4-H and FFA-affiliated youth, demonstrates that agriculture is in good hands and still very much a vital component of the Arizona landscape.
Did you know the very first Arizona Territorial Fair was held in 1884, and the fair has been located on the current site since 1905—that’s over 130 years of fun, without showing any signs of slowing down. Over those years, Veteran’s Memorial Coliseum has hosted performers including Elvis Presley, Jimi Hendrix, and Nirvana, and dignitaries including Presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump, and Pope John Paul II. But a visit to the Fair doesn’t only mean participating in the historical significance of this local installation, but it also means joining in the largest community event in the State of Arizona, which means it draws people from every geographic, ethnic, and age demographic. It’s a rite of passage—and statewide tradition — in Arizona, and one you won’t want to miss out on.
Come and draw outside the lines at the 2021 Arizona State Fair, Friday October 1 through Thursday, October 30 (open Wednesdays – Sundays).
For more info, visit: www.azstatefair.com
To purchase tickets, click here: