What's New

Get ready to catch Fair Fever at the Iowa State Fair, August 8-18, 2024. With 11 groovy, fun-filled, action-packed days of food, games, rides and music – there’s something fun for everyone! This year, the Iowa State Fair has added more ways for people to enjoy all 11 days.

There are so many things to do, eat and see at the Iowa State Fair – check out what’s NEW.

New Locations: Chainsaw Carvers move to Expo Hill and Art Fair will move to the Cultural Center Courtyard.

New Events: Glass blowing by Hot Glass Academy near First Church, the all-Iowa Fair View Farmers Market next to Grandfather’s Barn, Kids Can Cook demonstrations in Maytag Family Theater, Cowboy Boot Camp north of Little Hands on the Farm, a Goat Playpen and Farmer Bull Pen – Meet a Farmer in the Animal Learning Center and Llama Love: Hooves on Adventure ($; pre-registration required) special family event.

More Action and Thrills at Elwell Family Park: Antique Tractor Pull (FREE, August 8); Short Course UTV & ATV Cup (FREE, August 10); Charros performances (FREE, August 11); Outlaw Truck and Tractor Pulls ($, August 13 and 14); Garden Tractor Pull (FREE, August 16); Demolition Derby ($, August 17); and Figure 8 races ($, August 18). Buy discount Elwell Family Park tickets now at iowastatefair.org.

More for the Fairgoer: Fairgoers can find more Fairgrounds improvements in 2024, including additional ADA parking, restroom improvements, more water bottle filling stations, new shade areas and additional picnic tables and benches to rest, recharge and relax.

What's New in 2024

New Fair Hours: Fair hours are 8 a.m. to midnight, August 8-17, with no on-site ticket sales and no entry/re-entry allowed after 10 p.m. On August 18, the Fair is open from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. with no on-site ticket sales and no entry/re-entry allowed after 7 p.m.

Save Money: Savvy spenders, save time and money with advance admission tickets before August 8. Save $5 on adult tickets and $3 on tickets for children 11 and under (children 5 and under are free). State Fair Value Packs are the biggest and BEST way to save on all the best Fair activities for your family – just $20 for many of your favorite Fair activities and rides! Order at iowastatefair.org before July 24 or until August 7 at the Iowa State Fair Ticket Office. Plus, you can also buy Thrill Passes, Giant Slide and Ye Old Mill tickets and Barksdale’s State Fair cookie coupons at iowastatefair.org.

Try These Top 11 Things To Do at the Fair in 2024!

Fair Entertainment

Experience the ultimate in entertainment at the Fair. You can groove to the free stages, dig the strolling acts and catch the far out nighttime Grandstand concerts. Don’t miss out – snag tickets to the hottest shows at iowastatefair.org.

  • 11 Grandstand shows from Christian to rock, country to R&B plus a comedian
  • 8 outdoor events at Elwell Family Park, including 4 FREE events this year!
  • Family-friendly Fun Forest Stage shows featuring magic and children’s music
  • $500,000 worth of free entertainment on 3 stages nightly
  • 60th Iowa State Fair Queen Coronation on Aug. 10
  • 5th year for the Latino Celebration – featuring Salsa del Soul Productions, Aug. 11
  • 2 nights of Hairball, Aug. 13 and 14
  • Tributes to Tom Petty, Chicago, Elton John and Billy Joel
  • 3 chainsaw carvers and a NEW glass blower, Hot Glass Academy
  • 2 nights of Fair After Dark - Glow Party in The Garden and Fair Games ($; pre-registration required)
  • 60 feet of falls at iFlip and 25-meter dives in the Flying Fools High Dive Show

Family Fun

Catch Fair Fever with your family at the Fair, where kids and parents can both have a blast with tons of groovy activities.

  • 20th anniversary of Little Hands on the Farm
  • Llama Love: Hooves of Adventure, Aug. 16 ($; pre-registration required)
  • Art experiences in the Cultural Center with artWORKS, Art Fair and Art Attack, Aug. 8-18
  • Sensory-Friendly Morning, Aug. 14
  • 5 days of Cuddles and Snuggles Chore Time with baby animals ($; pre-registration required)
  • KIDZ BOP LIVE 2024 in the Grandstand, Aug. 18
  • 11 days of NEW Cowboy Boot Camp and NEW Kids Can Cook demonstrations Blue Ribbon Kids’ Club activities, 10 a.m. weekdays and
  • 40 different rides in Thrill Town and Thrill Ville to try, plus the Giant Slide and Ye Old Mill
  • 50th anniversary of the main Sky Glider
  • Painting with a Twist classes by the Blue Ribbon Foundation ($; pre-registration required)

Blue Ribbons

The Iowa State Fair is famous for competitions and ribbons. Some competitions require pre-entry and some special events allow registration on the day of the event. Check out the complete daily program at iowastatefair.org and/or the official app in mid-July.

  • 3,000+ static exhibits from 4-H youth across the state in the 4-H Exhibits Building
  • Over 50 local shows represented in the Bill Riley Talent Search
  • Win $5 for Husband Calling, Mom Calling, Joke Telling and more in Pioneer Hall
  • 224 Fabric and Thread classes in 2024
  • $67,940 in prizes for Food department entries
  • World-class Dollhouses & Miniature Rooms on display in the Cultural Center
  • 840 classes in the Floriculture and Agriculture & Horticulture Crop competitions combined
  • 24 new Food Department competitions, including mac & cheese creations, sourdough and jerky
  • 60th year of Farm Bureau Cook-off
  • Sign up on the spot for zany contests like Mr. Legs, Bubble Gum Blowing, Monster Arm Wrestling and Pigtail, Ponytail, Braid, Mullet & Mohawk contests 
  • Iowa’s largest juried Fine Art show and Photography exhibits in the Cultural Center

Fair Foodie

It’s a fever and the only prescription is Fair food! You need to run - don’t walk - to try all your favorites.

  • NEW Fair Food livestream judging and announcement July 16, 1 p.m.
  • 3 new foods will be competing for your vote Aug. 8-14
  • Over 20 NEW beverages on the list for 2024
  • 2.4 million Barksdale’s Chocolate Chip cookies sold last year. We are warming up the ovens now.
  • 11 days of demonstrations in The Kitchen. NEW Talk and Taste Series.
  • Farm to Fair Dinner Aug. 17 with chefs Aaron Holt, Grant Gillon and Jacob Schroeder
  • All-Iowa products at the NEW Fair View Farmers Market
  • Thousands of pounds of donated produce through “I Picked” in The Garden
  • 22nd edition of the Blue Ribbon Foundation Cookbook
  • More than 40 new foods to try
  • 200 food stands and 12 NEW for 2024

    Animals & Livestock

    The Iowa State Fair has a long-standing tradition of excellent livestock and horse shows. Find the up-to-date show schedule today!

    • FREE nightly horse shows. Sit back, watch and enjoy!
    • 1915 Sheep Barn restoration and renovations continue
    • Over 120 4-H, FFA and open class livestock shows Aug. 8-18
    • Big Time: Find the Big Boar, Super Bull, Big Ram and Largest Rabbit
    • 16 4-H and FFA exhibitors sell champion livestock in theSale of Champions, Aug. 17
    • 5th year for the Bacon Buddies Swine Show with Iowa Pork and Special Olympics Iowa, Aug. 10
    • 30 years of serving the Fair; congratulations to Don Hummel, Sheep Superintendent, and the 2024 Parade Marshal
    • 70 livestock breeds on display in the Avenue of Breeds
    • 7 families recognized with the 2024 Way We Live Award
    • NEW Goat Playpen in the Animal Learning Center, plus baby calves, pigs, lambs, goats, chicks, ducks and turkeys
    • Budweiser Clydesdales make a return to the Fair, Aug. 8-18