It’s Fair season, and that means lots and lots of useless items that you can’t help but buy and more fried food than you can shake a stick at. The 2012 San Diego County Fair will span 24 days this year. It began on Friday, June 8, and runs through Wednesday, July 4. The Fair will be closed Mondays, except for July 2. This year, the theme is “Out of this World”.  You will find all sorts of alien themed fun and activities around the grounds.

The Fair midway

A space exhibit was set up in a hall just inside the main gate.

High Fly’N Zip Line is a 400-foot ride from a 40-foot platform over the Infield Lake of the horse track.  Yikes!

Another favorite part of the fair are the flower and garden displays.  This is a wonderful place to take a leisurely stroll.


Most of the displays had an “Out of this world” theme.


The rides are neither for the thrifty nor for the cautious.  Each ticket costs $.75, and each ride averages 4 tickets with some of the larger rides demanding up to 6 tickets (equaling $4.50). It adds up fast. You may be able to find discount tickets to the fair including ride tickets at San Diego area Costco’s.

Sometimes the price is worth it though.

And sometimes the price isn’t worth it. “BOO!, exit to your left.”

$30.00 for a single rider, $25.00 a piece for two people.

No thank you!

Yep, they even have their very own Cars land.  Of course, it’s only slot cars and you have to pay $3 to drive them for 3 minutes.

The Fair is known for, above all else, food.  Lots and lots of unhealthy food.  We aren;t talking a minor indulgence.  We are talking a full turkey leg wrapped in bacon.  We are talking fried cereal, candy bars, and whatever else you can fit into the fryer.  This is not health food this is a death warrant.  It is, after all, the fair.

This gingerbread house even has imitation Butter Beer called Butter Brew. And it tastes almost exactly like what they serve at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Diabetic Coma?  Yes please.

You can spend hours going through the community exhibit halls. Quilting, collections, high school and community art and photography, furniture and other carpentry, the gem and mineral show. Here in the Hall of Useless Stuff, you can shop for a new wallet, get a dog brush that also cuts vegetables, Eat a fresh doughnut, or get your teeth whitened.

Makin’ Salsa!

Fairgoers with kids shouldn’t miss the Infield Kiddieland. They have free arts and crafts in the kids arts tent and a large play area with beach balls and inflatable basketball hoops and hula hoops. This is the perfect place to take the kids and relax for a while. The infield Farm area includes a horse show, hydroponics demonstrations, beekeeping exhibit, and daily contests (watermelon seed spitting, worm races, corn husking)

Tractor Races:
Lil’ Farmers interested in racing can test their speed in this little there and back course. Yep, it’s free.

One of the most surprisingly fun things in the infield are the turkey races, or rather the Turkey Stampede.  They don’t necessarily race.  It’s more liken they chase a small remote control truck full of feed around the track.  But it is too much fun.

Parking is $10.00 per vehicle
Adults $13.00
Ages 62 and older $7.00
Ages 6-12 $7.00
Ages 5 and younger Free
Season Pass $24.00  Available HERE or at the front gate.
You can look up the available Deals and Discounts here on the Fair website  The Passport to Savings coupon book has great deals and its a good way to sample different food items. Albertsons locations sell adult admissions for $2 off the regular price

The last week of the fair is motorsports week featuring monster trucks, demolition derby, beach buggies, and antique car races.  Here is a full listing of the concerts and entertainment offerings here.

While visiting the fair can get pricey, we have a few helpful tips for saving some money here and there.  Aside from the Passport to savings coupon book you might want to …

  • Get a souvenir cup and reuse it throughout the fair. Hot Dog on a Stick reusable cups can be used at HDoaS locations outside the fair.
  • Every Tuesday kids 12 and under get in free
  • Kids who read 10 books and have this form filled out can get into the fair for free any time. Teachers or librarians are supposed to verify the books have been read.
  • Park for free at off site lots.  Kids especially like the double decker buses that are used as shuttles.
  • Tuesdays are Taste of the Fair days. Vendors sell $2 taste sized portions of various food items. Great way to try a bunch of things for less money.
  • Wednesdays and Thursdays through June 28 are pay one price for rides days. $30 for a wristband. ($5 off if purchased at Albertsons)
We definitely recommend a visit to the Del Mar Fair. It’s good old fashioned family fun. And a very special thanks to Matt Hamand for his help in collecting the information for this update.

Today we also have news from…

Check back tomorrow for our coverage of 
SeaWorld San Diego and Universal Studios Hollywood

Like In The Parks on Facebook

(If you’ve got breaking news or photos you’d like to share, we’d love to hear from you!  Contact Dusty today