Everything you need to know about the S.C. State Fair

Updated: Oct. 7, 2019 at 4:27 PM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - It’s that special time of year, because the state fair is here!

It’s the 150th birthday of the South Carolina State Fair and before the excitement kicks off on Oct. 9, we have the ultimate guide to get you prepped for all the fun you can have.

  • Wednesday, Oct. 9 through Sunday, Oct. 20
  • Rides run until 11 p.m. most days and midnight on Friday and Saturday. On the last Sunday of the fair, rides stop at 10 p.m.
  • Opening gate times vary by day. Click or tap here to see the calendar.
  • Purchase discount tickets through Tuesday, Oct. 8 at participating Circle K stores, at the State Fair’s North Gate on Rosewood Drive, via FRED the roving ticket booth, or online by clicking or tapping here.
  • Admission on opening day, Wednesday, Oct. 9, is only $1 in cash, and guests pay at the gate upon arrival.
  • Discount ride vouchers may be purchased through Oct. 8 for $25. During the fair, vouchers will cost $30 during the week and $35 on the weekends (Friday – Sunday, on grounds).
  • Children 5 and younger get in free.
  • Those with a military ID (active and retired) get in free.
  • See more ticket deals by clicking or tapping here.
  • Chili Mac Attack Sundae, made with layers of fried mac n cheese, jalapenos and chili at DeAnna’s Concessions
  • Daley’s Double Dog Corndog
  • Bop’s Kettle Corn in the Heritage Village
  • Poppin’ Gourmet Burger, made with jalapeno cheese inside a gourmet beef burger at Carousel Foods
  • Birthday Cake Funnel Cake in honor of the S.C. State Fair’s 150th anniversary
  • LUNCH BUNCH PROMOTION: Pop in and out of the S.C. State Fair for lunch with a special Lunch Bunch ticket, available each weekday (except Oct. 9, when admission is just $1 all day) from noon to 2 p.m. Visitors pay the $10 entry fee with cash only and return to the ticket booth by 2 p.m. to get the cash back. No debit or credit cards will be accepted for this promotion.
  • 150 Celebration Wheel,” a 150-foot giant Ferris wheel. The ride includes 36 temperature-regulated gondolas. Each gondola carries six people on a luxurious journey to new heights never seen before at the South Carolina State Fair.
  • There are more than 70 rides at this year’s State Fair from North American Midway Entertainment.
  • Seven new rides are available this year, including the Star Dancer, a spectacular claw that swings 360 degrees; the Double-Decker Merry-Go-Round; Morbid Mansion, filled with frights and creepy corners; Twister, dual-motion cars on an elevating platform; Flivver, a fun, leisurely ride on winding tracks; Love Bug; and the Red Baron.
  • The headlining entertainment at this year’s state fair is a free daily “CIRCUS at the Fair,” with three, one hour-long shows each day under a 48-foot big top tent.
  • Shows begin at 2:30 p.m., 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. and are included with an admission ticket.
  • Each show features a variety of stunning entertainment from a renowned lineup of traditional and unique circus acts including the High Wire, the Wheel of Destiny, the Globe of Death, the Trained Dog Show, Duo Silks aerialists, America’s Show Camels, and a dazzling international cast with Ringmaster Ian Garden.

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