How do you want your corn dog? Florida State Fair officially launches the fair season
By Peter Covino
The Osceola County Fair is less than a week away, but you can get a head start on all those fun-filled fair type activities at the Florida State Fair, which is now underway.
The biggest fair in the state, this is the 110th edition of the fair. The fair runs at the Florida State Fairgrounds, just off of Interstate 4, east of Tampa.
This is a historic year for the fair and it has the theme “1st Place For Fun” reminding fairgoers that the Florida State Fair is the first state fair of the year in the country.
The fair has the largest independent midway and highlighting the largest traveling roller coaster in North America, the fair also offers 110 free things to do; four featured concerts including America, Country Gold, Sister Hazel and Uncle Kracker; amazing animals and livestock; the Mildred W. and Doyle E. Carlton Jr. Cracker Country; bizarre side show spectacles like sword swallowing and fire eating; the FMX Motorcycle Thrill Zone; fair food and other exciting entertainment throughout the twelve days of Fair fun.
“We’ve created expanded daily discounts and promotions to appeal to every group from honoring our heroes on opening day and four senior days to college day and four student days touching nine surrounding counties,” said Charles Pesano, executive director of the Florida State Fair Authority. “This is a great year to experience the fair and the key for having epic fun on a budget will be to buy early and save.”
Parking at the fair is free
Admission: Advance pricing is $7 for seniors (select senior days only;) $9 for adults. $5 for children ages 6-11. Children 5 and under are free. Ride armbands are $25 in advance.
Ticket Purchase: Available at Walgreens stores and participating AAA locations throughout the area. There are more than 110 rides at the fair midway. New at the fair this year are:
Comet II- A massive adult-size roller coaster featuring hairpin turns, quick drops and fast speeds. This is the largest traveling roller coaster in North America, and will debut this year at the Florida State Fair.
Charlie Chopper – The latest in family rides, this unique attraction holds adults and children in helicopter cars. The ride stands 50 feet tall and the cars spin around the center as the cars rise high in the air.
Hit In 2000 – Always the top carnival ride at the fair, the Hit In 2000 is the top Himalaya ride on the road today. This huge European-made attraction takes rides round and round on the track at pulsing pounding speeds. Add the latest music and a spectacular light display and you can see why this ride is one of the most popular at the fair.
The Rainbow – This high capacity ride loads 40 people in a large boat on the ground. As the tub swings higher and higher, it takes riders “over the top” and around the circle. The Rainbow has been completely refurbished with all-new lights and a brand new look.
Surf’s Up- Hang ten on this giant surf board that spins around and around while riders stand up and ‘surf’ the swells of the track.
Top Spin- On this thrill ride, passengers stand on a platform while two suspended arms swing up and down and turn over in mid air.
Magic Maze- A double decker fun house with a mirror maze on the first level and a fun house with a spiral slide on the second level.