State Fair

What’s left to do, see, smell, hear and eat at the Kansas State Fair

Free stuff at the state fair? You’d better believe it

Follow the adventures of Eagle staffers Denise Neil and Matt Riedl on their quest for freebies at the Kansas State Fair.
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Follow the adventures of Eagle staffers Denise Neil and Matt Riedl on their quest for freebies at the Kansas State Fair.

It feels like the Kansas State Fair just opened. And yet, suddenly – somehow – it’s almost over.

The fair’s final three days start on Friday in Hutchinson, and even though it will all be winding down, some of the best animal watching, concert attending, Midway riding, Pronto Pup eating and freebie collecting times are still ahead.

Here’s a look at what’s left to do, and what you just can’t miss:

FRIDAY

Celebrity goat milking contest: At 2:30 p.m., you can watch local celebrities compete to see who can milk a goat the fastest at the Sheep, Swine & Goat building.

Old Dominion with special guest RaeLynn: Country act Old Dominion, who also appeared at last year’s far – but as an opening act for Jake Owen – this year will be a headliner. The group will appear with special guest RaeLynn, known for songs like “God Made Girls.” The show starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Grandstand, and tickets are $25, $45 and $75.

Midway wristband day: The kids can ride the Midway rides nonstop from noon to 11 p.m. with a $30 wristband.

SATURDAY

Chainsaw woodcarving auction: Those wooden masterpieces the fair’s chainsaw sculptor Gary Keenan has been grinding out every day near Lake Talbott all will go up for auction at 4 p.m. at the Bretz & Young Injury Lawyers Arena. Buzz on over.

Chevelle in concert: The final 2017 Kansas State Fair Grandstand concert is by this alternative metal band, which hails from Chicago and is known for its hit “La Gargola.” Tickets are $25, $40 and $60, and the show starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Grandstand.

SUNDAY

Homemade ice cream and topping contest: Watch it all go down at 1 p.m. in the Domestic Arts Building.

Midway wristband day: Ride all the Midway rides you can handle from noon to 8 p.m. with a $30 wristband.

Outlaw Truck & Tractor Pull: No concerts in the Grandstand tonight. Just some old fashioned, dirty, vehicular fun. This annual event starts at 3 p.m. Tickets are $12 for adults and $5 for children ages 6-12.

DON’T LET THE FAIR END WITHOUT...

Visiting the Birthing Center: All the baby pigs, cows and chicks should be good and birthed by now. See them before they get any bigger.

Watching the Flippin’ Acrobats: This year’s Gottschalk Park show features high-flying acrobats, and you can watch them flip at 11 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. each day.

Finding Oscar the Robot: He’s the best hunk of outdated 1980s technology that still exists, and he somehow knows your name. He’ll be rolling around the fairgrounds as usual each day until the fair ends.

Eating a funnel cake burger: There’s still time to try one of the fair’s weird, deep fried specialty foods. See a list of what to try at Dining with Denise on Facebook.

Seeing the butter sculpture: It’s a cute one this year, featuring a boy riding a tiny tractor, and it’s still on display in the Pride of Kansas building.

Viewing the giant pumpkins: They didn’t break any records, but the state’s giant pumpkin growers grew bigger gourds than they did last year. See them in the Pride of Kansas building.

Seeing the pig races: Watch costumed swine race for glory at 10 a.m., noon, 2:30 p.m., 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. daily north of the Bison Arena.

Pricing a hot tub: The fair is more fun when you stop by the Meadowlark building and fantasize about turning over your credit card to the hot tub salesman.

Collecting a few freebies: All the organization and companies who rented booths should be particularly desperate to unload their stash of free pencils and stickers, yardsticks and toothpick dispensers. Take a bag and load up.

Getting a cone at the Dairy Bar: The fair’s most famous ice cream vendor has an all new look but all the same dairy goodness. Don’t leave without stopping by for a frozen treat under the Grandstand.

Kansas State Fair

What: The annual fair continues through Sunday

Where: Kansas State Fairgrounds, 2000 N. Poplar, Hutchinson

Tickets: Admission is $10 for adults, $6 for seniors and $6 for children and are available at the gates.

Tickets for concerts are available at the Kansas State Fair ticket office on the fairgrounds.

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