The Tulare County Fair has kicked off and is already seeing a return to pre-pandemic numbers, despite the fact that the best of the Fair is yet to come.
“We’ve already beat 2019’s numbers for opening day today,” said Fair CEO Dena Rizzardo Wednesday with about five hours of fair operation left in the evening. “Our presale tickets have also already beat 2019.”
Rizzardo, in her second year at the helm of the Fair, said that she attributes the high turnout to the Fair’s partners, the highly-supportive community and the large variety of attractions.
“Kids are hitting the carnival, we also have 800 kids out there showing off livestock right now — and that’s what the Valley’s founded off of,” Rizzardo said. “But there’s something here for everyone. We have the Remember the Fallen exhibit this year, the 9/11 memorial exhibit that we haven’t been able to get before. That hits you pretty hard. From music to entertainment, there’s something for all ages. And the food! Who doesn’t like fair food?”
Rizzardo expects more than 100,000 visitors to come through the gates this weekend.
In addition to agriculture, community art and business information, midway carnival rides and delicious food expected from a county fair, this year’s Fair has a stacked lineup of entertainment offerings for all ages.
Multiple stages feature rotating artists all day long.
In addition to The Band Fresh LA and Powerhouse! Percussive Dance, who perform multiple times a day, the Michelob Ultra/Eagle Mountain Casino stage will feature headlining performances by Beer Drinkers & Hell Raisers, Idol X and Karla Perez — tributes to ZZ Top, Billy Idol and Selena, respectively. Beer Drinkers perform at 9 p.m. Friday, Idol X takes the stage at 9 p.m. Saturday and Perez performs at 8 p.m. Sunday.
The Community Stage will see a variety of acts, including a performance by Fire Within Fire, a group of dancers that heat up the stage by dancing with — you guessed it — fire. The group will perform multiple times a night.
The Family Stage will see multiple performances per day by the Kiddle Karoo Monster Playhouse and the Matt Baker Comedy Show. The former is a puppet comedy and music show, perfect for those aged 2-8. Matt Baker is a comedian and stuntman who holds five Guinness World Records and has been called “the total package” by “America’s Got Talent” host Piers Morgan.
Other areas of interest throughout the weekend include Jump! The Ultimate Dog Show, for those who prefer the talents of our furry friends and Brad’s World of Reptiles, where visitors can meet snakes, turtles and even an alligator.
For those wanting a bit more adrenalin, the Demolition Derby is set for 5 p.m. Saturday night. General admission for the display of twisted metal and motor-centric mayhem is $12.
The Fair, located at 620 South K St., Tulare, runs 4 p.m. to midnight Friday, 2 p.m. to midnight Saturday and 2-10 p.m. Sunday.
Entrance into the Fair runs from $5-$11 depending on age, with discounts for service members and free admission for children 2 and under. Daily parking is $6.