The Great New York State Fair will be more affordable than ever in 2020 as admission tickets will cost $3 when purchased online and $5 at the gate, the lowest price since 1990 and a significant drop from the pricing of $6 before the Fair and $10 during the run of the Fair that has been in place since 2005. The Fair will maintain its variety of free and low-cost admission days for certain groups and children age 12 and under will continue to be admitted free of charge. Through expanded marketing efforts, making the Fair more affordable as well as increasing the amount and quality of free or low-cost entertainment, combined with the Governor’s investment of more than $120 million in revitalizing the Fairgrounds, attendance at the nation’s first and oldest state fair has grown by more than 46% in four years.
“Admission prices at major fairs across the country continue to rise, which strains the ability of many families on ever-tighter budgets to enjoy a day together. We believe all New Yorkers should be able to come to their state’s fair to enjoy the many free and low-cost activities we provide while spending the money they do have to make the most of their day,” said Troy Waffner, Fair Director.
To celebrate the lower prices, the Fair will hold a one-day sale of admission tickets for $2 each on Thursday, February 27. The sale will be online only, at the Fair’s official ticket seller, Etix.com. Purchasers may buy up to 8 tickets per person. With fees, each $2 ticket will cost $2.16. Up to 10,000 tickets will be available; the sale will end at 11:59 p.m. or when all tickets are sold.
Regular sales of $3 admission tickets will begin April 1. All sales will be only via Etix’ online channel or by phone to Etix customer support at 1-800-514-3849. Tickets ordered by phone incur a $4.25 delivery charge. The retail sales program has been discontinued. Tickets may be purchased online or by phone through the end of the Fair. Only those buying tickets from a ticket sales booth at an entrance gate will pay $5. Online buyers may show either printed-at-home tickets or show the tickets on their phones at Fair entrance gates.
Special and Promotional Days
Before buying tickets, buyers should be aware of the Fair’s special and promotional days, which offer discounts for certain groups:
- Children age 12 and under are admitted free every day;
- Biker Appreciation Day: Anyone arriving at the Fair on a motorcycle may park for free in any Fair lot and be admitted for $1 when showing a valid New York State motorcycle license on Saturday, August 29;
- Senior Days: Adults age 60 and over are admitted free on consecutive Mondays and Tuesdays on August 24-25 and August 31-September 1;
- Fire and Rescue Day: Members of fire departments and emergency services organizations with a valid current ID are admitted free of charge on Monday, August 24;
- Women’s Day: All women are admitted for $1 on Wednesday, August 26;
- Law Enforcement Day: All members of police agencies with valid current ID are admitted free of charge on Monday, August 31;
- Native American Day: Members of all Indian tribes are admitted free of charge on Friday, September 4, with admission taking place at Gate 5;
- Student Day: People age 18 and under are admitted free of charge on Friday, September 4;
- Dollar Day on Labor Day: Admission for all is $1 on the Fair’s final day, Monday, September 7.
Advance sale (non-promotional) tickets from the 2020 Fair will be honored for admission this year. This does not include free or promotional tickets. Any ticket to a 2020 concert at the St. Joseph’s Health Amphitheater at Lakeview may be shown at the gate for one free admission.
The complete list of current special and promotional days can be found on the Fair’s website.
Accelerating CNY Rising
Today's announcement complements “Central NY Rising,” the region’s comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and community development. The State has already invested more than $5.6 billion in the region since 2012 to lay the groundwork for the plan – capitalizing on global market opportunities, strengthening entrepreneurship and creating an inclusive economy. Today, unemployment is down to the lowest levels since before the Great Recession; personal and corporate income taxes are down; and businesses are choosing places like Syracuse, Oswego and Auburn as a destination to grow and invest in.
Now, the region is accelerating Central NY Rising with a $500 million State investment through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, announced by Governor Cuomo in December 2015. The State’s $500 million investment will incentivize private business to invest well over $2.5 billion – and the region’s plan, as submitted, projects up to 5,900 new jobs. More information is available here.
America’s first and oldest state fair, the Great New York State Fair, is “Beyond Great.” Founded in 1841, the Fair is the largest state fair in the east and America’s third largest state fair. More than 1.3 million people came in 2019 to enjoy the best food and beverages of New York agriculture, the largest free music festival of national touring groups in the nation, top class entertainment, shopping and more.
The Fair is a key piece of Governor Cuomo’s CNY Rising strategy of growing the Central New York economy through tourism. Fair attendance is up more than 46% since the beginning of more than $120 million in investments. The 2020 Fair runs from August 21 to September 7. Information about the Fair can be found here.
The New York State Fairgrounds is a 375-acre exhibit and entertainment complex that operates all year. A year-round schedule of events is available here. Find the Great New York State Fair on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and enjoy photos from the Fair on Flickr. Also, New Yorkers are invited to send their ideas for the Great New York State Fair at [email protected].