North Carolina State Fair
The North Carolina State Fair was first held in 1853 and has been at its present site since 1928. It draws a pretty significant crowd each year — last year reaching its second highest ever attendance with 1,028,364 visitors. The record was in 2010 when it saw 1,091,887 people attend. It’s held at the State Fairgrounds in Raleigh, about 20 minutes from our home.
Judging by the map, we only saw about 25% of what’s there. We went after our son woke from his nap, which means we didn’t get there until 3:30 or so, entering the park around 4:00. We left when he started getting punchy a little after 8:00, giving us four hours to explore and check out what’s there. We watched a BMX/Motocross stunt show by King BMX (you may have seen them on the X Games, Dew Tour & America’s Got Talent). We got some fair food (tator tots with ranch and bacon, gyro) and my son rode several of the rides in Kiddie Land.
In general, we didn’t see any of the exhibits or contents, or take in any of the adult rides. There was a ton there that we didn’t get to see, so if you have a little person in tow, you may want to play to do this in two trips, or maybe even get a babysitter for one of them.
Overall, we had a blast. The people-watching can’t be overstated. There were definitely some characters there. I never went to the fair in Jacksonville, but I assume it was very similar, albeit smaller in size.
More information about the fair can be found on their web site: http://www.ncstatefair.org/2017/index.htm