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Those Changes Families Asked for Are Coming to the State Fair!

A more convenient layout, a craft beer event, a farm-to-table dinner, a recycling program and expanded VIP parking are all changes to this year’s State Fair of Virginia that reflect suggestions from fairgoers.

“We listen to feedback from our customers and try to be as responsive as we can,” explained Marlene Pierson-Jolliffe, the fair’s executive director. “Suggestions on social media and via phone calls led to some of the changes and new offerings at this year’s fair. We appreciate our customers and want to make the fair a great experience for everyone.”

This year in Harvest Landing, the Kidway children’s amusement feature has been moved to a spacious asphalt area, in response to fairgoers who said the previous gravel area became muddy after rain and made maneuvering strollers a challenge. “Kidway is still in Harvest Landing and conveniently located with other family-friendly agricultural education displays and events. We feel confident that parents will be pleased with the new location,” Pierson-Jolliffe noted.

The larger Midway Madness has been relocated to the Festival Loop area, which gives customers a much shorter distance to walk and better access to food concessions and entertainment.

Barn Appetit, a farm-to-table dinner that showcases local farmers and their products, will be held Oct. 6 in Meadow Hall. Tickets can be purchased online and includes admission to the fair and a free ride on the giant Ferris wheel.

Additionally, the fair’s information ambassadors will staff booths conveniently located just inside the front gate and near the lobby entrance to the Farm Bureau Center. The annual Brunswick stew competition, which will be held Sept. 30, will be near the fair’s entrance tunnel for better access. A new special event tent will house the Giant Pumpkin and Watermelon Weigh-In Sept. 30, the Miss State Fair of Virginia pageant on Oct. 1 and the new Blue Ribbon Craft Beer Fest Oct. 6-8.

And to make ticket purchases convenient and cost-effective, fairgoers may buy tickets online at and, starting Aug. 21, at participating Walgreens stores. The 2017 State Fair of Virginia will run from September 29 through October 8. Information is available at

The State Fair is held each fall at its permanent home at The Meadow Event Park in Caroline County. The fair’s mission is to increase agricultural and natural resource awareness and interest through educational programs, exhibitions and competitions in a fun, family-friendly setting.

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