Updated Sun, Jul 28, 2013 1:15 pm
6. Music buff
An essential part of any fair, live musical performances occur nearly 300 times during the Ohio State Fair.
Large concerts held in the WCOL Celeste Center include pop sensation Carly Rae Jepsen and country star Justin Moore. Classic rock lovers won’t want to miss performances by Styx, REO Speedwagon and the Steve Miller Band.
The Fair features multiple free musical performances daily on the American Family Insurance Gazebo Stage and the Main Street Stage presented by CD102.5. Visitors will surely encounter some of the strolling entertainers and musicians whom wander the Fair. Additionally, the All-Ohio State Fair Band & Choir, made up of amazing Ohio high school musicians and vocalists, performs approximately 200 times throughout the Fair.
7. Animal lover
Animal lovers will have plenty of opportunities to make new furry, feathered and scaly friends. In 2012, the Ohio State Fair hosted more than 20,000 livestock entries including cattle, sheep, goats, rabbits, llamas, pigs and more.
Witness the miracle of birth and visit expectant animal mothers at the OVMA Veterinary Education Center near the Dairy Products Building. Visit with 50 exotic animals from around the world at the free petting zoo in Kiddieland.
Fairgoers can also walk through the aviary at the Natural Resources Park. Don’t miss the rescue animal show featuring animals from Mona Rutger’s Back to the Wild Wildlife Rehabilitation & Nature Education Center. Animal lovers should also catch Retriever Dogs in Action, the most popular show in the Natural Resources Park.
8. Bargain hunter
Planning a family outing doesn’t have to break the bank. The Fair offers many discounts on general admission tickets and concession items. Patrons can save $4 on adult tickets and $2 on child tickets when they purchase them at Kroger stores, AAA locations and select Ticketmaster locations prior to the Fair. Visitors should watch for special deal days, which include $3 admission until 3 pm, buy one get one deals and more.
Fair-goers can download printer-friendly coupons prior to visiting the Fair to receive food and vendor discounts. Visitors can also receive special deals on their phone by texting "Fair" to 88588.
Part of the Agriculture is Cool program, exiting fourth graders who bring their final report card will receive free gate admission along with their chaperone. Fourth grade teachers can also receive free admission by filling out a form here.
9. Super shopper
Avid shoppers can browse the many vendor booths at the Shoppes at North Commercial, MarketPlace, Heritage Crafts and Antiques & Collectibles Pavilion. Find authentic handmade gifts, one-of-a-kind jewelry, unique clothing and your favorite as-seen-on-TV products all at the Fair.
Many larger companies such as home improvement offer special discounts to Fair-goers who visit their booth. Shopping at the Fair provides a great way for visitors to enjoy some shade while taking advantage of great deals.
Have a snack while you browse the rows of vendors. Nitro ice cream, maple products, nuts and bulk candy are all popular food items in the various marketplaces.
10. Leisurely sightseer
While the Fair offers a lot of excitement, visitors should also remember that there is plenty of time to relax. In addition to the Natural Resources Park, the grounds offer Fair-goers beautiful scenery. All flowers at the Expo Center are grown from seed in the facility’s on-site greenhouses and planted near the start of the Fair. Visitors can scope out the grounds from above by taking a ride on the half-mile long SkyGlider.
New signage scattered throughout the grounds points out key areas of interest to visitors such as the Dairy Products building where visitors can view the famous Butter Cow and grab a milkshake. Strolling entertainers return again this year with amazing magic tricks, outstanding acrobatics and incredible impersonations of your favorite celebrities.
Republished with permission from Experience Columbus.