Nothing Compares to family-friendly fun at the 2019 Iowa State Fair, August 8-18.

New this year is daytime entertainment for families from Kachunga the Alligator Wrestler, Sea Lion Splash and for the first time ever- Wool Rider's Only Mutton Bustin'; kids and families won't want to miss the action at the 2019 Iowa State Fair.

Kids Activities and Entertainment

• Back after a one year absence, Bandaloni is a one of kind, one man band complete with equipment and songs to keep the whole family engaged. He can be found strolling near Rock Island every day. Sponsored by Perficut

• Rock-It the Robot hasn't been to the Fair for a few years and we have missed his high tech light show. The life-like, nine-foot tall gentle giant has numerous digital voices for speaking and singing and he engages crowds with his robotic humor.

• Find high flying acrobatics in The Red Trouser Show sponsored by Drake University at Expo Hill complete with fire and comedy. It's a high energy show you can't miss!

• The Andringa Family Foundation Little Hands on the Farm teaches children the importance of agriculture and how it affects their daily lives in a fun and interactive way at Kids' Zone.

• Feel the squish of grapes between your toes at Grandfather's Barn. Teams of competitors stomp grapes to win ribbons.

• Sign up at the Fair for fun contests like Bubble Gum Blowing, Pie Eating, Pedal Tractor Pull, Scavenger Hunt, Mom Calling, Children's Singing, Checkers Tournament and even the Pigtail, PonyTail, Braid, Mullet & MoHawk Contest. (locations and times vary)

• Sandscapes – A team of national, international and world champion sculptures construct an agriculture-themed masterpiece daily in front of Thrill Ville. You can see straw sculptures near the William C. Knapp Varied Industries Building sponsored by Principal and catch 3-D chalk art in the Patty and Jim Cownie Cultural Center, too.

• Chainsaw Carvers Gary Keenan and TJ Jenkins work together to carve amazing works of art. Characters come alive with the whip of chainsaws and dust. Some are even sold in the woodcarvers auction at the end of the Fair with proceeds going to the Blue Ribbon Foundation.

• Alligator wrestling in Iowa? Only at the Iowa State Fair. Kachunga and the Alligator's interactive program educates and entertains as Kachunga takes on a man-eating reptile. Who wins? You will have to see the show to find out.

• Sea Lion Splash sponsored by Mountain Valley Spring Water is a unique show that will have you cheering and laughing as sea lions balance balls, shoot hoops, dance and perform handstands.

• Wool Riders Only Mutton Bustin' – "The Toughest Sport on Wool" will give boys and girls, ages three to six years old and weighing less than 60 pounds, a chance to ride a sheep for a full six seconds. Riders are timed and placed with a chance to compete in the finals, just like the big rodeo!

• Have you Herd? is a new program outside of the sheep barn where you can learn from a livestock exhibitor what it takes to get ready for a show. Don't miss the interactive dairy tours and goat yoga with animals as well.

• The Hy-Vee Fun Forest Stage sponsored by Community Choice Credit Union has entertainment focused on kids each day. You can find Greg Frisbee's crazy show and dance along with the Dollipops. At the Fun Forest Stage, near the play equipment, you can find the statue of Baby Mine, an elephant that the Iowa State Fair owned 90 years ago.

• The Paul R. Knapp Animal Learning Center sponsored by Christensen Farms is a highlight for many with live viewing of baby animal births. Learn about our Iowa livestock and see how much Iowa farmers care for their animals. Plus, you can sign up for text alerts on baby animal births by texting BABY to 75782.

• Sesame Street characters join the butter cow this year for the 50th anniversary of Sesame Street and the 50th anniversary of Iowa Public Television. Your favorite loveable characters will be a highlight of your visit.

• For safety, we encourage you to visit information booths, the Hall of Law, or the Star 102.5 and 93.3 KIOA or Lazer 103.3 booths to get your kid find security bracelets courtesy of Mercy One.

Blue Ribbon Kids' Club

Enjoy free take and make or learning adventures at 10 a.m. and 5 the Fun Forest Stage (sign up 30 minutes prior)

Thursday, August 8 Make and Take Backpack Day

Friday, August 9 Fishy Fun Day

Monday, August 12 It's Midwest Dairy Day

Tuesday, August 13 Curtain Call Kids Day

Wednesday, August 14 Best Buddies of Iowa and Baby Mine Day – 10 a.m. only

Wednesday, August 14 "Deep Freeze" with the Science Center of Iowa – 5 p.m. only

Thursday, August 15 Goat Yoga Day

Friday, August 16 My Family's Pig Farm Book Day

Special Blue Ribbon Kids' Club Saturday Meet and Greets

Events at 10 a.m. at the Fun Forest Stage; sign up 30 minutes prior

Saturday, August 10 Meet and Greet with the Iowa State Fair Police Department

Saturday, August 17 Meet and Greet with the Iowa State Fair Butter Sculptor – Sarah Pratt

Save Some Cash

Purchase discounted Thrill Park passes, Family Fun packs and admission tickets before August 8 and save.

Purchase tickets online at or at the ticket office located in the Administration building on the Fairgrounds or at area HyVee, Fareway, Cash Saver or Price Chopper locations.

To find a complete schedule of events or to enter family friendly contests at the Fair, visit "Nothing Compares" to kid's activities at the 2019 Iowa State Fair, August 8-18.