One of the best things about summer is the county fair, and Southern California has the best to offer in that department. Have a great time chowing down on bizarre fried concoctions, petting adorable farm animals and riding classic amusement park rides at any of these three county fairs this summer.
Los Angeles County Fair, Aug. 30 – Sept. 29
1101 W. McKinley Ave.,
Pomona, CA 91768
Los Angeles rounds out the County Fair season in Southern California and in my personal opinion is the best. The LA County Fair features biggest shopping marketplace this side of the Mississippi and food, food and more food – the deep-fried, ooey, gooey, on-a-stick, dipped-in-chocolate, covered-with-powdered-sugar treats that you can only find here.
On opening weekend – Friday, Aug. 30 through Labor Day – admission is just $1 for the first three hours of each day. Food Drive Fridays are back, with guests getting into the fair with five canned food products (noon to 6 p.m.). After opening weekend, admission Wednesday through Friday is $5 after 5 p.m. Wild Wednesdays offer admission and rides for just $25 with coupon from Farmer Boys or Del Taco. A Season Pass is just $29.99. If purchased at Walgreens (beginning Aug. 1), a season pass is $24.99. A parking pass is $60. A Super Saver Bundle is available online – two season passes and a parking pass for $99.
Adults (13+) $12
Child (ages 6-12) $8
Seniors (60+) $10
Adults (13+) $19
Child (ages 6-12) $12
Seniors (60+) $15
Orange County Fair, July 12 – Aug. 11
88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
The OC Fair isn’t just about rides, food and cute animals, it’s also about community and this year it is showcasing what makes Orange County so amazing. The multi-faceted celebration features a free nightly video presentation of photographs, some taken and submitted by residents of Orange County displayed on a 40-foot screen in The Hangar, which is accompanied by music and pyrotechnics.
Fair hours are noon to midnight Wednesdays through Fridays and 10 a.m. to midnight on Saturdays and Sundays. The Orange County fair is closed Mondays and Tuesdays. Wednesdays are the best days to go to the fair, with a variety of special perks like free admission with donations on certain days and a $30 unlimited carnival ride wristband.
Looking for an easier way to get to the fair? The OC Fair Express bus is back with non-stop weekend bus service from nine locations throughout Orange County throughout the duration of the fair. Buses will run hourly between about 2:30 p.m. and midnight on Fridays and 9:30 a.m. and midnight on Saturdays and Sundays. One-way fare on the OC Fair Express is just $2, but riders also receive a coupon valid for $3 off admission to the fair.
General (13–59) $11
Seniors (60+) $8
Youth (6–12) $6
Children 5 and under free
Ventura County Fair, July 31 – Aug. 11
10 West Harbor Blvd
Ventura, CA 93001
“Boots, Barns and Banjos” is the theme of the 2013 Ventura County Fair. With Styx, Air Supply, 3 Doors Down and Plain White T’s performing in the grandstand it is definitely worth the drive The kids will love Uncle Leo’s barnyard, the small livestock barns and the new Judge William P. Clark large livestock area to see animals of all shapes and sizes.
The fair will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. and admission will be just a dollar on Opening Day, Wednesday, July 31. There are also a variety of free and discounted days throughout the fair’s run.
Adult Admission (13-64) $11
Children and Seniors $8
WOW! Pass (admission to each day of the Fair) $36