Now in its 73rd year, the largest entertainment event in Arkansas is set for Friday, October 12, through Sunday, October 21.
The Fair has lots to offer, from a variety of free concerts, great food, and livestock competitions, to various creative arts contests, interesting attractions, professional bull riding and much more.
"We have special promotions and discounts every single day," said Shoptaw. "For the fourth year in a row our guests can enjoy great fair food and save money on parking and admission with Lunch at the Fair. Monday through Friday from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., we're offering free parking and free gate admission for anyone who would like to come out to the fairgrounds for lunch. Pick up this year's Fair Food Vendors Map at the gate and find your favorite food."
Advance Purchase Ride Passes will be available at 34 participating Walgreens stores in Arkansas and redeemable for a one-day unlimited ride armband at the State Fair. The special $20 pass can be redeemed at midway ticket booths any day of the Fair, except Dollar Day on Monday, October 15, and will save patrons three dollars.
Advance gate admission can also be bought for $6.99 and a Family Value Pack for $42.95. The value pack includes four Fair admission tickets (good for any age), one parking pass, 24 ride coupons and $10 in food coupons. Family Value Packs can be bought at the Fairgrounds Ticket Office, participating Walgreens locations, online (click here), or by phone at (501) 372-8341. Food coupons are redeemable at any Food Court vendor and in Barton Coliseum. (Coupons not accepted at carnival food vendors.)
Daily admission is $8 for adults, $4 for children (ages 6 to 12) and senior adults (ages 60 and over) and free to children under six. Fairgrounds parking is $5 per vehicle.
Folk rock band America will perform hit songs like Horse With No Name, Ventura Highway and Sister Golden Hair, Friday, October 12, at 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, October 13, at 8:30 p.m., Sugarfoot's Ohio Players perform their many R&B hits.
Think Floyd USA - the American Pink Floyd tribute band - bring their show to the main stage on Sunday, October 14, beginning at 8:00 p.m.
Young Country Night is set for Thursday, October 18, beginning at 5:30 p.m., featuring Casey James, The Farm and Dustin Lynch.
Friday, October 19, at 8:45 p.m., the State Fair welcomes Kansas for an evening of classic rock. All of these performances take place on the Wendy's Main Stage.
MORE ROCKIN' ENTERTAINMENT
Fairgoers can enjoy a variety of free entertainment on the Wendy's Main Stage, including:
Joe Darr and the Vista Cruze Band
That One Guy
Tyler Bryant and the Shakedown
Texaco Country Showdown
PROFESSIONAL RIDIN' [Click here for more information].
The Arkansas State Fair presents Ridin' in the Rock when the Professional Bull Riders Tour (PBR) stampedes into Barton Coliseum on consecutive nights, Friday, October 19, and Saturday, October 20. The PBR Touring Pro Division features up-and-coming bull riders as well as tour veterans competing to qualify for the PBR World Finals. Friday and Saturday performances start at 7:30 p.m. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.
PBR Ridin' in the Rock tickets can be bought online at ticketmaster.com or at the Fair Ticket Office. Tickets start at $10, and include $15 and $20 seating levels. VIP seats are $25. All seats are reserved. Tickets purchased in advance include State Fair gate admission.
CARNIVAL RIDIN' [Click here for the full list of rides].
Deggeller Attractions of Stuart, Florida, will bring the midway attractions to the Fair once again. Fairgoers looking for exciting and thrilling carnival rides are sure to be pleased with the selection of 65-plus rides. Several new rides can be found on the midway, including the Riptide rollercoaster (click here for more information).
FAIR FOOD TASTIN' [Click here for the full list of foods].
It is not the State Fair without the smells and tastes of Fair food. Fairgoers will find all their favorites, and a new twist or two, including funnel cakes on-a-stick - plain or with chocolate, strawberry or apple sauce - red velvet funnel cakes, root beer float, fried cookie dough on-a- stick, fresh saltwater taffy, and fried "Do-E-Oreo" (an Oreo cookie covered in cookie dough, battered and deep fried), Mexican fried ice cream, strawberry lemonade, pecan pie on-a-stick and strawberry shortcake on a stick!
According to Shoptaw, patrons can choose from approximately 49 food vendors that will be set up on the Fairgrounds, and an additional seven inside Barton Coliseum for PBR performances. "The Big Show Diner will be open again this year with the Showtime Deck available for patrons to enjoy outdoor dining on a covered deck overlooking the midway. The Diner will offer fresh prepared foods featuring Mexican specialties and blue plate dinners including roast beef, hamburger chuck steaks, catfish, shrimp, chicken, pork chops, sandwiches, and a child's menu," said Shoptaw.
Some of the Fair's returning favorites that folks can chow down on include Randy's Original corn dogs, Paizi's Pitas, The Burger Wagon's ground chuck hamburgers and pig lickers, fried alligator, fried Kool-Aid, fried butter, cornbread on a stick, fried green tomatoes and much more.