Nostalgic & New: Arizona State Fair

As the high Arizona summer temps started their descent, and cooler weather began to emerge, the setting became ideal for the annual Arizona State Fair. I had not attended the fair since I was a small child, and had since spent the subsequent decades experiencing the Puyallup and other northwest fairs. The Arizona State Fair has certainly grown since I was a child and musical entertainment offered quite a variety of name acts ranging from Snoop Dogg to Billy Idol. Of course there were countless other local entertainers available throughout the run of the fair.

The midway offered plenty of popular rides including some very interesting water rides and roller coasters. Guests looking not to bust the bank may want to take advantage of the ride passes available during the week which allow guests to take in unlimited rides for a set fee which is much cheaper than paying for each ride individually, as after 4-5 rides the pass pays for itself.

Numerous food vendors adorn the midway offering a nostalgic bouquet of aromas to tantalize the senses. Everything from the traditional hot dogs and burgers to turkey legs, Mexican food, and the amazing Navajo tacos were available. But there was also an offering of many public service booths as well as interesting sideshow attraction that harken back to the best midway freak shows.

There was no shortage of vendors throughout the fair, although it did take a bit of adjustment for me as I had become so accustomed to the vendors in the Northwest. It seemed odd not to be inundated with saunas, hot tubs, and fireplaces available at special fair pricing. While at first some of the vendors seemed to be offering items typically found at a swap meet, sticking it out we were able to find a very nice mix of items available.

Of course it wouldn’t be a fair without livestock and we certainly enjoyed the great array of animals that were available for viewing in the livestock barns as well as the numerous agricultural exhibits. My wife, a new transplant to Arizona, was particularly delighted by the There was also an exhibit available for an additional cost of which allows guests to get an up close look at the marvels of the human body.
When the sun went down, the fair kicked into high gear as the lights on the midway certainly added a more festive dimension to the fair.

The Arizona State Fair was a great trip down memory lane, a chance to experience the old and new and a fun event that truly offers something for the entire family.