The Texas State Fair 2013 festival is an annual state fair held in Dallas, Texas that hosts more than 2 million people a year. The festival begins the last Friday of September and ends 24 days later. This year Texas State Fair 2013 will kick off September 27th. The events will continue until October 20, 2013. The fair has been held in the same location at Fair Park since 1886.
Dates: September 27 – October 20, 2013
Expected Attendence: over 2,200,000
Fair Location and Texas Map:
Fair Park in Dallas Texas
The backbone of the festival has been centered around the Oklahoma vs. Texas football game called the Red River Rivalry and played in the Cotton Bowl at Fair Park.
The State Fair Classic, featuring Grambling State University and Prairie View A&M University, is played at the Cotton Bowl during the fair. In 2010, Baylor and Texas Tech played their game during the fair for the first time. During the opening weekend of the 2013 fair, Army and Louisiana Tech will play in the inaugural Heart of Dallas Classic at the Cotton Bowl.
The 2013 State Fair of Texas is the only fair in the country to include a full blown auto show, dating back to 1904. It includes over 300,000 square feet of new model vehicles, two buildings, a Truck Zone and a Test Drive Track. It has been the site for several international launches including the 1998 Chevrolet Blazer, the 2007 Chevrolet Tahoe and the 2008 Ford Explorer SportTrac.
The State Fair also showcases “Birds of the World” where several birds fly overhead. The Texas Skyway is a gondola ride that transports visitors around the fairgrounds. Its construction cost 5 million dollars. There is also a BMX bike show as well as dog and pig races. For children, puppet shows, Children’s Medical Center Barnyard, and Story Time also take place inside the fair.
In recent years the fair has emphasized its reputation as an event featuring unique, albeit high-fat foods. It has been known for years for Fletcher’s brand corny dogs. Recent years have seen the introduction of new unusual deep-fried items, including deep-fried Oreos, deep-fried Twinkies, deep-fried s’mores, deep-fried pork ribs, fried cheesecake; deep-fried butter, deep-fried peanut butter, jelly, and banana sandwiches, and most recently a batter-based fried Coke. New foods in 2008 included chicken fried bacon and fried banana splits. For the 2012 fair, the Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas added the deep-fried Samoa cookie.
Texas State Fair History:
- The Texas State Fair opened its gates for the first time on October 26, 1886. Approximately 14,000 people attend the opening day.
- On November 7, 1886, the fair closes and attracted over 100,000 people for the very first year.
- In 1913, the fair introduces the first Automobile building which was filled with 175 vehicles for fairgoers to see.
- The fair was canceled in 1918 due to the US Army taking control of Fair Park to establish an aviation boot camp known as Camp Dick.
- In 1930, construction of Fair Park Stadium (now known as the Cotton Bowl) begins.
- In 1932, TX-OU play their Red River Rivalry for the first time at Fair Park Stadium.
- In 1937, the first Cotton Bowl Classic is played in Fair Park.
- Big Tex makes his first appearance in 1952.
- In 1956 the Trailblazer monorail began operation at Fair Park from 1956 to 1964. It was the first commercially operated monorail system in the United States
- Elvis Presley performs in the Cotton Bowl during the fair in 1956.
- In 1960, The Dallas Texans (AFL) and the Dallas Cowboys(NFL) play their first season in the Cotton Bowl.
- In 1964 the monorail closed and was replaced by the Swiss Sky Ride, a 64 car aerial ride that traveled over a 3,800 foot path (the longest ever built).
- In 1979, a tragic Sky Ride accident occurred during the last day of the fair, prompting the removal of the attraction.
- In 1983, an eighteen-year-old boy was killed and several bystanders were injured when a gondola fell off the Enterprise (ride).
- In 1985 the Texas Star opens as the largest ferris wheel in North America.
- In 1989, The Comet Roller Coaster, a Fair Park landmark since 1947, is torn down.
- Big Tex receives a new look in 1999.
- Following the 2001 September 11 attacks, Dallas police and State Fair officials announce the implementation of new security measures during the annual event.
- In 2005, the Fried Peanut Butter, Jelly and Banana Sandwich is introduced to the fair.
- In 2007 the Texas Skyway aerial ride opens in Fair Park.
- In 2010, the 8000 ft Greenhouse on the Midway is built to house 1000 hanging baskets, beehives, and Farmer Mike the Pumpkin Carver.
- Fairgoers spent more than $37 million in 2010 which broke the fair’s record.
- On October 19, 2012, Big Tex caught on fire, burning it down to the skeletal frame, with only the right arm remaining.
- In 2013 the State Fair will open up a brand new attraction which will be a 500 feet observation tower called “Top of Texas Tower”, as part of a renovation of part of the midway to be called “Summer Adventures at Fair Park”.
- The annual State Fair of Texas BBQ and Chili Competition is becoming a popular pre-fair event in which participants compete for best CASI Rules Chili, open ‘no rules’ chili, Ribs and Chicken.