Aside from the rides, fair food, games, and animals, the Washington State Fair events are one of the best reasons to head to the fair. Each year, headliners grace the stage at the Grandstand—a large, outdoor arena with both covered seating (in the elevated grandstand seats) and open-air seating at ground level. Often, the ticket prices for the headlining shows are cheaper than similar performances at other local venues such as KeyArena or the Paramount, and as a bonus, concert-goers get free fair admission.
Along with Grandstand performances, the fair is also known for a great number of free shows at smaller stages around the fairgrounds.
Washington State Fair Concerts in 2016
J. Cole with special guest Bas
When: September 2, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $70-$115
Kid Rock with special guest Uncle Cracker
When: September 3, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $95-$120
When: September 4, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $85-$95 general/$250-$350 VIP
End of Summer Bash with Jimmy Buffett Tribute Show by A1A
When: September 5, 5 p.m.
How much: Free
Creedence Clearwater Revisted
When: September 7, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $30
When: September 8, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $30
Thompson Square Dancin' in the Dirt Party
When: September 9, 9 p.m.
How much: $35
Chris Janson Dancin' in the Dirt Party
When: September 10, 9 p.m.
How much: $35
For King & Country and Matt Maher
When: September 12, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $26-$46
DNCE with special guest Lunchmoney Lewis
When: September 14, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $28-$55
X Ambassadors/Rachel Platten
When: September 15, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $40-$65
Charlie Wilson with special guest Joe
When: September 16, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $45-$65
When: September 17, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $50-$85
Fiestas Patrias featuring Voz de Mando, Proyecto X and Mariachi Divas
When: September 18, 5 p.m.
How much: $10 kids and $20 adults in advance/$15 kids and $30 adults day of show
Chris Young with Special Guest Cassadee Pope
When: September 19, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $40-$60
Gavin DeGraw & Andry Grammer with special guest Wrabel
When: September 21, 7 p.m.
How much: $43-$65
When: September 22, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $65-$100
Jeff Foxworthy & Larry the Cable Guy
When: September 23, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $55-$80
Flo Rida with special guest Natalie La Rose
When: September 24, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $40-$68
Train with Special Guests Magic!
When: September 25, 7:30 p.m.
How much: $50-$75
Washington State Fair Rodeo Events
When: September 9, 1 p.m.
How much: $5-$18
Rodeo Playoffs w/ Thompson Square
When: September 9, 6:30 p.m.
How much: $30-$40
When: September 10, 1 p.m.
How much: $20-$30
Rodeo Playoffs with Chris Janson
When: September 10, 6:30 p.m.
How much: $30-$40
Rodeo - Puyallup Finals
When: September 11, 1 p.m.
How much: $25-$35
Tips for attending State Fair Concerts and Events
- Don’t skip checking out the free events. Coca-Cola Stage often gets the best free performances, including the hypnosis shows.
- If you’re attending an evening performance, bring a jacket. Sitting still for a while, you will likely get chilly.
- The more expensive concert seating is in an uncovered area on ground level. If the weather looks cloudy or rain is possible, bring a rain jacket or poncho. You won’t regret it.
- Don’t discount the grandstand seating for concerts. It’s farther away, but most of it is covered and elevated.
- If you do sit in the grandstand, you may want to bring a cushion to sit on.
Free Events at the Fair
Many events at the fair are completely free. If you want to do the Puyallup on a budget, look into the many discounts available, but also make sure to check in at the stages located around the fairgrounds for what’s on that day.
Located right in the center of the fairgrounds, Coca-Cola Stage is one of the best spots for free entertainment.
Many of the repeat-offender acts that have come to be fair favorites over the years went on at this stage, including hypnotist Travis Fox and the Gentlemen Jugglers, both of which have retired. Hypnotist Tina Marie and the Doo-Wah Riders are some of the current acts that grace this smaller stage.
Another stage known for free entertainment is the Showplace Stage, located near the Blue Gate. This stage is known for family-friendly music and shows.
Fountain Plaza Stage
Located just inside the Gold Gate, the Fountain Plaza Stage is small, but always brings great shows. It’s a great spot to stop by and check, whether you stay for a whole show or just watch for a few minutes. One of the best acts located here, year after year, is Roberto the Magnificent. Fans of the Gentleman Jugglers, a juggling duo who often appeared on the Coca-Cola Stage in years past, will recognize Roberto as one half of the act, now gone solo and just as funny.