Arizona State Fair: Fun for the Entire Family


For more than 130 years, The Arizona State Fair in Phoenix has been the state’s playground. Offering diverse entertainment for the entire family, this fall extravaganza is one of the most highly-anticipated events of the year. In fact, the fair is attended by almost 20% of the entire state. Not from the Grand Canyon State? You can still join the festivities during a desert vacation in America’s Southwest.

The Arizona State Fair is open Wednesday through Sunday, October 7-30, 2016.






Midway Attractions

Put yourself at the center of attention and delve into everything the fair has to offer. Whether you want to test your mettle on a thrilling ride or sink your teeth into delectable food, you’re sure to find things to see, hear and taste on the midway.



When it comes to rides, you can expect thrills from the usual suspects: roller coasters (both wild and mild), a Ferris wheel, slides, merry-go-rounds, high-flying chairs, seats dangling from tilting arms and the all-new Endeavor. This whirling wheel sends riders 60 feet up into the sky at speeds of 25-miles per hour in open air suspended cars. As an added bonus, you’ll get completely turned upside down.

Always put safety first. Check for posted restrictions, use caution and follow the rules provided by the operators on every ride at the Arizona State Fair.

Food Stands

One of the best parts of attending the fair is taking in the many tantalizing smells from the concession vendors wafting through the air. That, and actually eating the delicious food. As you might expect, favorites like funnel cakes sprinkled with powdered sugar, giant turkey legs, cotton candy, fresh-squeezed lemonade, ice cream, hotdogs, hamburgers and even chocolate covered bacon can all be ordered.


You’ll also find a wide variety of mouthwatering deep-fried food. Not surprising, considering the official slogan at the Arizona State Fair is: “Anything deep fried and on a stick.” Treats fried up to a golden brown include brownies, caramel apples, cookie dough, candy bars and beer. Be sure to wear your loose-fitting clothes and over indulge.


One of the most enduring sounds at the Arizona State Fair is that of the Midway Hawkers beckoning you to try your luck at a game of chance. From ball in a basket and water gun races to balloon darts and the weight guessing booth, you just might walk away with an oversized stuffed animal or a souvenir that can fit in your pocket.

Grandstand Events

Those looking to add even more fun to their Arizona State Fair experience can find plenty of fast-paced excitement in the Grandstand area.

Bigfoot—A Monster Truck Legend

In the world of Monster Trucks, no other vehicle has left more indelible tracks than Bigfoot. Witness this legendary beast drive over anything that stands in its way during a vacation getaway to the Arizona State Fair. It’s been years since Bigfoot was seen on the fairgrounds, so make sure you get a glimpse before this colossal crusher cruises away into the distance.


Figure 8 Racing

Grab a seat and get ready for extreme fun as race car drivers show off their skills. Expect stunts, fancy maneuvers and inescapable crashes over three days of thrilling excitement. Admission into Figure 8 Racing is included with Arizona State Fair admission.

High School Rodeo

The mission of the Arizona High School Rodeo Association (AHSRA) is to bring statewide attention to high school rodeo, its participants and history of the sport. Paramount to these events are good sportsmanship and professional conduct.

Competitions include bareback and saddle bronc riding, cutting and team roping, bull riding, steer wrestling, goat tying, barrel racing, pole bending and more. The cowboys and cowgirls will be pitting themselves against each other and the clock.

Rock U—The Institute of Rock ‘N’ Roll

Rock out at a rockin’ attraction dedicated to the history of rock and roll. Rock U is all about listening, learning and letting the good times roll.


Travel back to the 1950s at the Founders Display for an interesting look into the lives and careers of the innovators of rock and roll. At the Concert Experience, you’ll see vintage posters, albums and the outfits rock and roll stars wore on stage. Listening areas will also be available to let you listen to the sounds that shaped a new musical genre. From vinyl records and 8-track tapes to cassettes and digital music, How We Listen is the place to be to hear just how far rock and roll music has come. Unleash your inner rock star at the Playing Experience Station. Here, you can plug in, keep the beat and strum on actual instruments found in rock and roll bands.

Farm Animal Exhibits

Barnyard animals have always been one of the main attractions at the fair and this year is no exception. From petting zoos and cow milking, you can enjoy a wide variety of experiences featuring livestock. Exhibits include cattle, sheep, rabbits, sheep and goat. You can even become a spectator at the Swifty Swine Races and Swimming Pigs Show.

Live Concerts

When it comes to concerts, the Arizona State Fair has always attracted the top stars. Past fairs have included performances by Elvis Presley, Nirvana, Jimi Hendrix and The Doors. This year, fairgoers can enjoy headlining performances by these talented artists and many more!

Iggy Azalea

Australian rapper Iggy Azalea will be on stage to perform chart-topping songs from her two hip hop albums The New Classic and Digital Distortion. The singer/songwriter first gained public recognition after posting music videos to YouTube.

Saturday, October 15 at 7 pm

Iggy Azalea Arizona State Fair Bluegreen

The Flaming Lips

Psychedelic theatrical rockers The Flaming Lips are bringing their over-the-top live show to the Arizona State Fair for an unforgettable performance. Fans of the group can expect to see front man Wayne Coyne crowd surf in his trademark plastic bubble.

Saturday, October 22 at 7 pm


Thrash metal legends Slayer will be live on stage to deliver a blistering set filled with raging riffs and searing vocals. Fans of the GRAMMY-Award winning band can expect to hear all the classics along with tunes from their brand-new album Repentless.

Wednesday, October 26 at 7 pm

Concerts are included with paid entry into the Arizona State Fair. All shows are general admission seating and will be limited to first come, first served.

After spending the day at the Arizona State Fair, head over to Cibola Vista Resort and Spa for some rest and relaxation. The villas at this desert retreat are decked out in southwestern décor with all the comforts of home.


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Photo Credits:

Julia Altenburger – Iggy Azalea, CC BY-SA 2.0
Jot Powers – Bigfoot, CC BY-SA 2.0