My last memory of the county fair was during my childhood. I don’t remember specifics… But I do remember that the three of us were there together as a family…my dad and I going on rides…my mom and I browsing the vendors…the three of us eating snow cones and popcorn.
In many ways, the fair has changed tremendously…and it many ways it’s exactly as I remember it. We took my son to the OC Fair over the weekend and he had a blast. We rode the Ferris Wheel, ate Cotton Candy (everything in moderation, right?), and walked through the livestock area. It was warm, but not unbearable and the breeze and shade kept us cool.
The fair is huge… which means there really is something for everyone. Kids of all ages will enjoy the carnival while parents rock out to music by artists like Faith Hill and Martina McBride. Daily entertainment includes a list of completely free activities like the Peking Acrobats and the Russell Brothers Circus. There is so much to see and do, I couldn’t possibly list it all. So be sure to visit their website for the activities that interest you.
The fair isn’t complete without eats and treats! Now…if you read my blog, you know that I’m a bit of a health nut. But that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy the occasional treat. It’s only at the fair that you’ll find all things fried including butter, chocolate, and even frog legs! But rest assured that there are plenty of culinary options including a BBQ stand we stopped at which served delicious chicken and cornbread. And if you’d rather skip out on chocolate covered bacon, you can pick up fresh sushi, hummus and tabouli, salads, and more throughout the fair. On Fridays from 12-4 pm, the fair offers $1 Food Tastings which is perfect if you’re undecided or want to try a variety of culinary fare.
Admission to the fair is actually quite affordable and prices are as follows:
General (13-59) $10
Seniors (60+) $7
Children (6-12) $5
Children under 6 FREE every day
If you think you’ll want to attend throughout the summer, check out the OC Fair Super Pass which will grant access to all 23 days of the fair, express-lane entry for all gates, 20 percent off reserved seating at the Action Sports Arena and The Hangar, and 2-for-1 offers for select Pacific Amphitheater concerts. The prices are as follows:
The OC Fair is also hosting “We Care Wednesdays” and donors will receive on free fair admission ticket and one carnival ride:
Wednesday, July 28 – Book Drive, Noon – 6 p.m.: Donation of one new or three gently used children’s books accepted. Benefits Orange County public elementary schools through Los Angeles Times’ Reading by 9 and Book Ends.
Wednesday, August 4 – Clothing Drive (New for 2010), Noon – 6 p.m.: Donation of 5 new or gently used clothing items accepted. Benefits Goodwill of Orange County.
Wednesday, August 11 – School Supply Drive, Noon – 6 p.m.: Donation of one new school supply item valued at $3 or more (suggested items: markers, notebooks, backpacks, and calculators) accepted. Benefits Share Our Selves.
Every Thursday, children 12 years and younger receive free admission, and every Friday, guests 60 years and older receive discounted $5 admission in addition to free Ferris wheel and merry-go-round rides.
The carnival also offers discounts with a $25 all-you-can-ride wristband and $1 games on Wednesday and Thursday and on Friday, enjoy $1 rides and $1 games until 7 p.m.
On the weekends, you can get free parking and shuttle service at the Experian parking lot located off the Bristol Street exit of the 405 freeway. We actually did this over the weekend and it was very convenient.
The 2010 OC Fair runs through August 15 and is open Wednesday-Sunday.
No compensation was received for this post. I received VIP tickets to the fair to facilitate the writing of my experience.