Since 1886, the State Fair of Texas has transformed Dallas’ Fair Park into a celebration of agriculture, education, and corn dogs — of course.
So with the sweet smell of funnel cakes looming in the air and trailers of livestock rolling in, we thought we’d provide a numerical snapshot of the annual event and what’s new this year.
One giant man
The iconic 55-ft Big Tex sculpture will be lifted into place on Friday at 8 a.m. with a brand-new pair of Lucchese boots. The size 96 boots were designed by Big Tex Boot Design Contest winner Jessica Bonilla and feature a sunset landscape. Be sure to snap a photo with Big Tex and tag #FTWtoday before you leave the fair.
24 days of festival fun
Known to be the longest-running fair in the nation, this year’s festival will run from Friday, Sept. 29 to Sunday, Oct. 22. Guests can expect new attractions like circus acts, fried food delicacies, butter sculptures, thrilling rides, and so much more.
Three tasty winners
The annual Big Tex Choice Awards — a competition to see who can make the best fair food — is a fan favorite with items awarded in three different categories. Here’s who took the top prizes this year.
Best Taste: Savory — Deep Fried Pho
- A very Texan rendition of a Vietnamese classic, this recipe deep fries noodles, beef, fresh herbs, and bean sprouts after they’ve been simmered in rich pho broth. The deep-fried pho is served with a side of broth for dipping, hoisin sauce, sriracha, jalapeños, lime, and cilantro.
Best Taste: Sweet — Biscoff Delight
- Just when you thought cheesecake couldn’t be any better, this dish was invented. It’s a New York-style slice of cheesecake coated in rich Belgian chocolate and a layer of crushed Biscoff cookies, drizzled with a drizzle of Lotus Biscoff spread, and topped with a Biscoff cookie.
Most Creative — Bourbon Banana Caramel Sopapillas
- These traditional sopapillas feature vanilla-caramel-infused bananas, sweet bourbon syrup, crushed candied pecans, sweetened mascarpone cheese, crumbled Nilla Wafers, and dusted with powdered sugar. Need we say more?
90 performing artists
More than 90 artists in a variety of genres will perform across three stages. Some bigger names like CeeLo Green, Bowling for Soup, and Lil Jon will perform on the Chevrolet Main Stage. The Bud Light Stage will feature more local talent, and the Yuengling Flight Stage will feature comedy shows and live music.
The best part? All concerts and shows are included with the price of fair admission.
500,000 corny dogs
Over 500,000 corny dogs are sold annually throughout the 24 days of the State Fair of Texas. Fletcher’s Original Corny Dogs will go through 1,500 gallons of mustard and 800 gallons of ketchup. You can find Fletcher’s at seven stands throughout the park.
Seven new attractions
Your familiar favorites will still be around but don’t miss out on this year’s new attractions.
Soap Bubble Circus | See Guinness World Record-breaking feats of bubble-ology like a snowman on a tightrope and an exploding bubble volcano.
Street Circus | Watch a hilariously weightless performance of acrobatics, hula hoops, handstands, contortion, and comedy.
Dinosaurs at the Lagoon | Ten life-size dinos that were native to Texas will bring prehistoric fun for all ages.
Acrobuffs | Grab a seat — and an umbrella — for an epic water balloon stage show.
Home for the Holidays | Winter magic is coming early with this display of beautifully decorated Christmas trees.
Sarah Twister | The world-renowned street performer will wow crowds with contortion and back-bending archery shots.
Texas Tech University Centennial | Head to the Hall of State to walk through 100 years of the Red Raiders.
20,000 pounds of hay
More than 24,000 pounds of hay were consumed by 16,000 livestock entries at last year’s livestock events. Throughout the fair, guests can attend a variety of rodeo events, horse + livestock exhibits, and highly-anticipated auctions.
The 2022 Big Tex Youth Livestock Auction raised a record-breaking $1.9 million for youth livestock exhibitors.
70 thrilling rides
The Midway features more than 70 rides including the Thrillway, the Kidway, the iconic 212-ft. Texas Star Ferris wheel — not to mention enough Midway games to keep you entertained for hours.
Four last-minute pro tips
- Gates will open at 9 a.m. all 24 days.
- Tickets + parking passes are available online.
- Parking is available on-site — prices range from $20-$40 depending on the proximity to the fairgrounds.
- Admission is the price of a child’s ticket after 5 p.m.