The Florida State Fair returns in 2022 from February 10-21 at the Florida State Fairgrounds with nearly a CENTURY of building family traditions in Tampa Bay! A century, y’all! We’re talking about GENERATIONS of families who have experienced the Fair with their kids.
If you’re new to town or have simply never been, this is the year you’ll want to go! If you’ve been, come back! Sure, there are the things you’d expect at a state fair like farm animals and deep fried everything, but it’s so much more than that.
It truly is a family-friendly event and this year, they’ve got even more FUN in store for you and the kids! There is even an area dedicated just for the little ones with rides and activities just for them like the Giraffe Menagerie and Great American Petting Zoo.
Keep in mind that we are still in the midst of a worldwide pandemic, so some things may look a bit different this year.You’ll also be encouraged to social distance and keep those hands clean! Learn more about the safety measures here.
Here are our 10 favorite things to do with the kids at the Florida State Fair:
1. Visit the Midway
2. Giraffe Menagerie and Great American Petting Zoo
There are so many animal encounters at the Florida State Fair, but this is one of our favorites.
It allows you to get up close to meet an feed Twiggs the giraffe and some of his buddies in the petting zoo! Littles get a kick out of this one!
3. More Unique Animal Encounters!
The Mooternity Ward is a favorite where you can meet brand new to the world. The Live Carousel with purebred Welsh ponies and Camel Rides will be life long memory makers for sure! Be sure to stop by the Salute to Ag space which features cows, chickens, goats and more! Don’t forget to stop by the Milk Barn too to learn where milk comes from!
4. Little Farm Hands exhibit
This is an indoor exhibit designed or kids ages 2-7 years old which we LOVE as a way to seek some shade, but the kids might love it even more! This is where they can get hands on with fun farm activities to explore the world of agriculture.
5. Explore AgVenture, Robot Zoo and More!
AgVenture is a great place to take the kids so they can take a deeper dive into where our food comes from and the future of farming. And maybe they want to take a step back into history at the Cracker Country museum to learn about the life of a Florida pioneer in the 19th century.
The Robot Zoo is a children’s exhibit where kids can see giant robot animals at work.
Other cool exhibits: Cattle Ranching Museum and Florida Fish & Wildlife Exhibit. Learn more here.
6. Circus Hollywood and MORE!
Circus Hollywood will be thrilling several times each day with their amazing acrobatics and performances. Just when you thought you’ve seen it all, stop by Gascar’s Crazy Animal Races to see pigs, goats, chickens and more race to the finish line!
7. Cowboy Bootcamp
Young buckaroos can get hands on in this activity area designed just for kids where they can learn what it takes to be a real cowboy. Find this activity over in the Veranda area of the Fair.
8. Hollywood Racing Pigs and other animal shows!
The Hollywood Racing Pigs and Disc Connected K9’s shows also have several performances each day and are absolute must sees! If your kiddos love a cold glass of milk, take the to the Milk Barn where they can see where milk comes from! It’ll be a fascinating adventure! And of course, there’s the Giraffe Menagerie and Gascar’s Crazy Animal Races we already mentioned.
9. Thrilling shows and live performances!
10. The FOOD!
If you want to map out your foodie adventure, see the map here:
Learn more about things to do at the Florida State Fair and buy your tickets online here.
We definitely encourage you to buy your tickets in advance because you’ll save more that way. Advance purchase admission is $10 for adults and $6 for kids ages 6-11. Kids 5 and younger are free. If you buy the tickets at the gate, it’s $15 for adults and $9 for kids, so buy ahead of time if you can.
If you know you’ll be riding a lot of rides, you might want to consider purchasing the Arm Band ahead of time which is $30 for unlimited rides for a single day. There’s a Weekday Arm Band for $20 for February 10 and 14-17. In addition to buying your tickets and armbands in advance, we also recommend you bring cash to have on hand for experiences like the Giraffe Menagerie–so you can buy carrots and other giraffe snacks to feed them. The kids will be begging!
Before you head out, you can plug in this address to your GPS: 301 US Hwy 301, Tampa. There are three entrances to get to access Florida State Fair and you’ll see plenty of traffic markers in place to guide you to the right spot: Orient Road, Martin Luther King and US 301. Parking is free for Fair guests. See the map here.
You can map out your day by visiting the calendar of events here for a stress-free visit!
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