Florida residents are fortunate to have 50 chances each year to take advantage of one of the best entertainment values around — county fairs — 51 if you count the Florida State Fair. County fairs can be found throughout Florida — from the rolling hills of the Panhandle to the sandy shores of South Florida — and they highlight the communities where they are located... making each different. Besides the midway, livestock competitions and exhibits, agricultural exhibits, arts and crafts and live entertainment provide an exciting day for the entire family.
While every county fair is unique, there are a few standouts. The Miami-Dade County Fair and Exposition ranks as one of the largest and most successful fairs in the nation and attracts over a half-million visitors every year. For over 60 years, the all-youth Southeastern Youth Fair in Ocala is where young people have showcased their 4-H and FFA (Future Farmers of America) skills; but, one of the most popular components of that fair has to be the two-day Florida High School Rodeo, where young cowboys and cowgirls show off their roping and riding skills. The Florida Strawberry Festival provides outstanding exhibits, low-cost nationally acclaimed entertainment... and, of course, plenty of those tasty red strawberries.
While fairs offer good entertainment value, there are a few cost-cutting measures available to save even more:
- Take advantage of advance ticket sales, often available online and at special ticket offices.
- Save a bundle on packages that include admission, ride wrist bands and drink coupons. These are often only available in advance.
- Look for special offers and coupons available in newspapers, restaurants, etc.
- Take advantage of special days. Often fairs offer special admission discounts to children, seniors and special interest groups on certain days. Some days may even be set aside as free admission days for kids.
- Park at an off-site lot and ride free shuttles.
- Pack a picnic lunch or carry a few healthy snacks and a bottle of water.
Find a Fair
Fair dates and locations are listed below:
Central Panhandle Fair (Oct 1-6) - Panama City
Baker County Fair (Oct 4-13) - Macclenny
Walton County Fair (Oct 8-13) - DeFuniak Springs
Northwest Florida Fair (Oct 8-13) - Fort Walton Beach
Greater Holmes County Fair (TBA) - Bonifay
Greater Hillsborough County Fair (Oct 17-21) - Brandon
Northeast Florida Fair (Oct 18-28) - Callahan
Pensacola Interstate Fair (Oct 18-28) - Pensacola
Alachua County Fair (Oct 19-27) Gainesville
St. Johns County Agricultural Fair (Oct 23-28) - Elkton
Greater Jacksonville Agricultural Fair (Oct 31 - Nov 11) - Jacksonville
Manatee County Fair (Jan 17-27) - Palmetto
DeSoto County Fair (Jan 17-27) - Arcadia
South Florida Fair (Jan 18 - Feb 3) - West Palm Beach
Polk County Youth Fair (Jan 26 - Feb 1) - Bartow
Charlotte County Fair (Feb 1-10) - Port Charlotte
Florida State Fair (Feb 7-18) - Tampa
Highlands County Fair (Feb 8-16) - Sebring
Martin County Fair (Feb 8-16) - Stuart
Osceola County Fair (Feb 8-17) - Kissimmee
Hendry County Fair and Livestock Show (Feb 15-23) - Clewiston
Southeastern Youth Fair (Feb 15-24) - Ocala
Hardee County Fair (Feb 16-23) - Wauchula
Pasco County Fair (Feb 18-24) - Dade City
Southwest Florida and Lee County Fair (Feb 21 - Mar 3) - Fort Myers
Saint Lucie County Fair (Feb 22 - Mar 3) - Fort Pierce
Chalo Nitka Festival, Glades County Youth Livestock Show and Frontier Days Rodeo (Feb 26 - Mar 2) - Moore Haven
Florida Strawberry Festival (Feb 28 - Mar 10) - Plant City
Central Florida Fair (Feb 28 - Mar 10) - Orlando
Suwannee River Fair (Mar 7-20) - Fanning Springs
Firefighters' Indian River County Fair (Mar 8-17) - Vero Beach
Sumter County Fair (Mar 8-17) - Bushnell
Okeechobee County Fair (Mar 12-17) - Okeechobee
Collier County Fair (Mar 14-24) - Naples
Miami Dade County Fair and Exposition (Mar 14-31) - Miami
Bradford County Fair (Mar 15-24) - Starke
Sarasota County Fair (Mar 15-24) - Sarasota
Brevard County Fair (Mar 21-30) - Melbourne
Putnam County Agricultural Fair (Mar 22-30) - East Palatka
Citrus County Fair (Mar 25-31) - Inverness
Suwannee County Fair (Mar 29 - Apr 6) - Live Oak
Flagler County Fair (Apr 3-7) - Bunnell
Clay County Agricultural Fair (Apr 4-13) - Green Cove Springs
Lake County Fair (Apr 4-13) - Eustis
Santa Rosa County Fair (Apr 5-13) - Milton
Levy County Fair (Apr 11-14) - Williston
Hernando County Fair (Apr 12-20) - Brooksville
Greater Holmes County Fair (TBA) - Bonifay