Upcoming Fair Dates

Historically, the Fair ended on the Sunday one week before Labor Day and the earliest Fair dates were August 13-23. In 1994, the Iowa State Fair Board, in an effort to avoid earlier school start dates, moved the dates of the Fair up one week. The Fair now ends on the Sunday two weeks prior to Labor Day. Based on calendar shifts, the earliest Fair dates are August 7-17 and the latest are August 13-23.

YearFair Dates
2017 Aug 10-20
2018 Aug 9-19
2019 Aug 8-18
2020 Aug 13-23
2021 Aug 12-22

Daily Attendance

The State Fair is Iowa’s largest event, annually attracting visitors from all over the Midwest, as well as the rest of the U.S. and many foreign countries. Following the Fair, daily attendance estimates are set aside and an actual count of tickets including daily sales, advance sales, exhibitors, concessionaires, campers, children, credentials, half price, etc. is made to determine the final total attendance.

Fair Day 2015 2016
Day 1 91,569 70,927
Day 2 95,624 90,259
Day 3 115,959 113,873
Day 4 101,783 97,923
Day 5 92,837 93,092
Day 6 75,436 88,171
Day 7 106,367 95,881
Day 8 107,449 85,366
Day 9 106,622 86,674
Day 10 111,931 112,672
Day 11 111,821 96,440
Total 1,117,398 1,031,278

Fair Dates 1854 to Present

Fair Dates 2000-Present

YearFair DatesFair Theme
2000Aug 10-20Zero In, August 10-20, 2000
2001Aug 9-19It's a Winner!
2002Aug 8-18The Big One
2003Aug 7-17One in a Million
2004Aug 12-22Still the One
2005Aug 11-21America's Favorite Fair...and it's right in your own backyard
2006Aug 10-20Only at the Fair
2007Aug 9-19Sounds Like Fun
2008Aug 7-17U Gotta Love It
2009Aug 13-23State Fair Time
2010Aug 12-22Non Stop Fun
2011Aug 11-21Nothing Compares, 100 Years of the Butter Cow
2012Aug 9-19Nothing Compares, It's Fairlicious
2013Aug 8-18Nothing Compares, Happiness Is
2014Aug 7-17Nothing Compares, Amazingly Amusing
2015Aug 13-23Nothing Compares, Fair Tour
2016Aug 11–21Nothing Compares to My State Fair

Fair Dates 1975-1999

YearFair DatesFair Theme
1975Aug 15-24The Colonizers
1976Aug 18-29Spirit of Iowa '76
1977Aug 18-28New Horizons
1978Aug 17-27Take a Closer Look
1979Aug 16-26Get In Touch With Iowa
1980Aug 14-24Celebrate, Iowa
1981Aug 13-23So Much More To Go For
1982Aug 12-22So Much More To Go For
1983Aug 10-20So Much More To Go For
1984Aug 15-25Just See Us Now
1985Aug 15-25Augustfest!
1986Aug 14-24Come Home to the Iowa State Fair
1987Aug 20-30Celebrate an American Classic
1988Aug 18-28An Old-Fashioned Good Time
1989Aug 17-27An Old-Fashioned Good Time
1990Aug 15-26Iowa’s Blue Ribbon Fun Fest
1991Aug 14-25Iowa’s Blue Ribbon Fun Fest
1992Aug 20-30The Only Fun of Its Kind
1993Aug 19-29The Only Fun of Its Kind
1994Aug 11-21The Only Fun of Its Kind
1995Aug 10-20The Fun and Only
1996Aug 8-18Let Yourself Go
1997Aug 7-17Go for It
1998Aug 13-23Way Too Much Fun
1999Aug 12-22Knock Yourself Out

Fair Dates 1950-1974

YearFair DatesFair Theme
1950Aug 25 - Sep 1
1951Aug 25 - Sep 3
1952Aug 23 - Sep 1
1953Aug 29 - Sep 7
1954Aug 28 - Sep 6
1955Aug 27 - Sep 5
1956Aug 24 - Sep 2
1957Aug 23 - Sep 1
1958Aug 22-31
1959Aug 28 - Sep 6
1960Aug 26 - Sep 4
1961Aug 25 - Sep 3
1962Aug 17-26
1963Aug 16-25
1964Aug 21-30
1965Aug 20-29Our Indian Heritage
1966Aug 19-28Our Explorer Heritage
1967Aug 18-27Our Pioneer Heritage
1968Aug 16-26Our Gay 90s Heritage
1969Aug 15-24Our Roaring 20s Heritage
1970Aug 21-30Discover Iowa
1971Aug 20-29Discover Mexico
1972Aug 18-28Discover Canada
1973Aug 17-27Discover Hawaii
1974Aug 16-26The Discoverers

Fair Dates 1925-1949

YearFair Dates
1925Aug 26 - Sep 4
1926Aug 25 - Sep 3
1927Aug 24 - Sep 2
1928Aug 22-31
1929Aug 21-30
1930Aug 20-29
1931Aug 26 - Sep 4
1932Aug 24 - Sep 2
1933Aug 23 - Sep 1
1934Aug 22-31
1935Aug 21-30
1936Aug 26 - Sep 4
1937Aug 25 - Sep 3
1938Aug 24 - Sep 2
1939Aug 23 - Sep 1
1940Aug 21-30
1941Aug 20-29
1942No Fair (World War II)
1943No Fair (World War II)
1944 No Fair (World War II)
1945No Fair (World War II)
1946 August 21-30
1947Aug 22-29
1948Aug 25 - Sep 3
1949Aug 24 - Sep 2

Fair Dates 1900-1924

YearFair Dates
1900Aug 24 - Sep 1
1901Aug 23-31
1902Aug 22-30
1903Aug 21-29
1904Aug 19-28
1905Aug 25 - Sep 1
1906Aug 24-31
1907Aug 23-30
1908Aug 20-28
1909Aug 27 - Sep 3
1910Aug 25 - Sep 2
1911Aug 24 - Sep 1
1912Aug 22-30
1913Aug 20-28
1914Aug 26 - Sep 4
1915Aug 25 - Sep 3
1916Aug 23 - Sep 1
1917Aug 22-31
1918Aug 21-30
1919Aug 20-29
1920Aug 25 - Sep 3
1921Aug 24 - Sep 2
1922Aug 23 - Sep 1
1923Aug 22-31
1924Aug 20-29

Fair Dates 1875-1899

YearFair Dates
1875Sepember 27 - Oct 1 (opening ceremony is on Sepember 28)
1876Sepember 11-16 (extended one day because of rain)
1877Sepember 17-21
1878Sepember 16-20
1879Sepember 1-5
1880Sepember 6-10
1881Sepember 5-9
1882Sepember 1-8
1883Aug 31 - Sep 7
1884Aug 29 - Sep 5
1885Sepember 4-11
1886Sepember 3-11 (extended one day because of rain)
1887Sepember 2-7
1888Aug 31 - Sep 7
1889Aug 30 - Sep 6
1890Aug 29 - Sep 5
1891Aug 28 - Sep 4
1892Aug 26 - Sep 2
1893Sepember 1-8
1894Aug 31 - Sep 7
1895Sepember 6-13
1896Sepember 4-11
1897Sepember 11-18
1898No Fair (World's Fair held in Omaha, NE, Trans-Mississippi Exposition and Spanish American War)
1899Aug 25 - Sep 2

Fair Dates 1854-1874

YearFair Dates
1854October 25-27
1855October 10-12
1856October 8-10
1857October 6-9
1858Sepember 28 - Oct 1
1859Sepember 27-29
1860October 2-5
1861Sepember 24-27
1862Sepember 30 to Oct 4 (extended one day because of rain)
1863Sepember 15-18
1864Sepember 27-30
1865Sepember 26-29
1866Sepember 18-22 (Tuesday was rainy - opening ceremonies postponed until Fair extended one day)
1867October 1-4
1868Sepember 29-3 (Fair extended one day because of rain)
1869Sepember 14-17
1870Sepember 13-16
1871Sepember 11-15
1872Sepember 9-13
1873Sepember 8-11
1874Sepember 22-25