Walking the grounds with sticky-sweet cotton candy in hand, there’s nothing quite as welcome in the height of summer than a day at the local county fair. The undeniable excitement that it brings, from the aromas of food truck fare to the squeals of delight from kids on the merry-go-round, is something that truly comes with the season. Pack up the car and prepare yourself for a full day (and night) at the Hudson Valley’s renowned county fairs.
Altamont Fairgrounds, Altamont
Enjoy various amusement rides, agricultural exhibits, a petting zoo, a lumberjack show, arts and crafts and more.Tickets are $15 (Tuesday and Wednesday) or $17 (Thursday through Sunday). Children under 3 feet tall are free.
Greene County Youth Fair
Angelo Canna Town Park, Cairo
Attracting more than 20,000 people, this fair offers free admission and entertainment in celebration of the talents of the local youth. Visit the agriculture tent, bring your kids to the activities area and enjoy forestry and conservation displays.
Orange County Fair
Orange County Fairgrounds, Middletown
Candy apples, popcorn, cotton candy, ferris wheels, merry-go-rounds and various forms of high-flying, stage-stomping and family-friendly entertainment provide the quintessential summer fair night. Ticket prices vary.
Ulster County Fair
249 Libertyville Rd, New Paltz
July 31-August 5
Local agriculture/horticulture, animal husbandry, entertainment, shows, vendors and exhibits come together for five days of family fun. Tickets available August 2. $15 pay one price. All carnival rides and entertainment are free with admission.
Grahamsville Little World’s Fair
Grahamsville Fairgrounds, Grahamsville
Spend a day at the longest-running independent fair in New York State. Enjoy carnival rides, live music and performances, horse shows and milking demonstrations. Under 5 and over 75 free, $2 children 5-11, $6 adults. Admission includes free parking, exhibits, contests and entertainment.
Dutchess County Fair
Dutchess County Fairgrounds, Rhinebeck
This agricultural fair showcases livestock and offers artisanal handmade goods like jams, quilts and more. Free shows, attractions and entertainment. $15 adults, $10 senior citizens/military, children under 12 free.
Columbia County Fair
Columbia County Fairgrounds, Chatham
August 29-September 3
Demolition derbies, freestyle motocross, monster tractor pulls and authentic rodeo competitions provide for an exciting night of down-and-dirty summer fun.