The Washington State Fair held in September each year is a major event in Western Washington, and locals flock from all corners of Western Washington to attend. But the fair has a smaller sister event each spring that’s a lot of fun, but a whole lot smaller and more approachable. The Washington State Spring Fair is an ideal family event and is especially perfect for families with small children. Ride the rides, eat some fair food and don’t miss all the baby animals!
In 2019, the Washington State Spring Fair will take place on April 11-14 at the Washington State Fairgrounds in Puyallup.
It's Got All the Fun of the Fair in a Smaller Package
The Washington State Spring Fair is a whole lot like the state fair held in September…but smaller. A good deal of the south side of the fairgrounds is closed for the Washington State Spring Fair. You’ll find fewer large animal barns and fewer hot tub and shed kind of vendors, but the rides, stages and exhibitor areas like the Showplex, Pavilion, and Expo Hall are all open. Still, because of the slightly smaller size, the spring fair can feel a little less hectic and crowded. This makes it perfect for families with children.
It's Cheaper Than the State Fair
While many events get more expensive every year and can start to approach being unaffordable for the average family, the Washington State Spring Fair is quite a bit cheaper to do than the full fair. Tickets are usually under $10 for adults and, if you buy tickets online in advance of the fair, you’ll save a few dollars over buying at the gate. Parking is also free on weekdays!
It's Very Family-Friendly
Where the Washington State Fair in September is huge and busy, the Washington State Spring Fair is smaller and a little more approachable. The smaller footprint area means less walking for little ones. There are often fewer people who attend this fair, too, so if you’re not a big fan of keeping track of the kids in big crowds, this is the fair for you. Watch for special family activities, like Storybook Village for young children, Kidzone where older kids can learn about nature, science and more, and a STEM showcase.
There are Still Lots of Rides
While the September fair pulls out all the stops in the rides department, the spring fair has just enough rides to keep things interesting (including the beloved and historic rollercoaster)! For adults and teens, there are enough midway rides to shake up your scones. For kids, Sillyville (a collection of rides for younger children) is for kids two and older who want to add some excitement to their days.
There are Baby Animals Galore
Spring means new life and the Washington State Spring Fair celebrates this with baby animals! There are plenty of grown-up animals too, but keep an eye out for baby bunnies, chicks and ducklings as their cute factor is in full effect. There's a petting zoo as well where kids can interact with the critters up close and personal.
The Entertainment is Free
The spring fair doesn’t come with a concert series like the state fair in September does, but there are plenty of smaller shows to catch. And while state fair shows on the Grand Stand come with ticket costs, all shows at the spring fair are free. Kick back to watch some dancing performances, jugglers and magic shows, and even an Elvis tribute! Shows take place on stages throughout the fairgrounds, including the Coca-Cola stage near Hobby Hall, an outdoor stage near the blue gate entrance, as well as stages inside the Pavilion and Expo Hall.
The Fair Food Game is Strong
If you can’t wait all the way until September for fair scones, elephant ears, funnel cakes and other fried delights, never fear! You can get your fair food fix in April at the spring fair. Most of the very same foods are available, but not quite all. Still, the important thing is – there are scones! (And elephant ears and Krusty Pups and piroshky and Earthquake's Burgers!)
There are Fireworks on Friday and Saturday Night
If you stay at the spring fair until later at night on Friday or Saturday, you’ll get to welcome in spring with some fireworks. The shows usually start about 9 p.m. when dark falls. The fireworks are set off from the Grandstand and you can see them from most areas of the fairgrounds, so long as a building isn’t in your way.