The first official Washington State Fair was held back in 1900. With no more than a few thousand people in attendance, the first fair was nothing more than a simple agricultural showcase. However, as years and decades went by, the Washington Fair slowly grew into one of the biggest state fairs in the entire country, with more than 1 million people attending the event in recent years.
Families from all over the country visit and take pleasure in a vast variety of activities and events. Thanks to a plethora of commercial exhibits, livestock, food, rides, rodeos and concerts, this fair offers endless fun and entertainment for people of all ages. It also consists of two events that are held every year; the four-day Spring Fair, which is typically held every April, and the main State Fair, held every September.
If that is not enough, the fair also offers an excellent opportunity for RVers to relax in the RV park. So, if you plan to travel to the fair in your camper, and take pleasure in what Puyallup has to offer, make sure to pack everything you need for some great camping time.
The Washington State Fair offers a variety of ticket options at different prices. The most expensive ones will be adult and group tickets, whereas tickets for children five and under may enter free of charge.
If you want to save up some cash, your best option might be to purchase your tickets online and in advance. Another way of getting a discount would be to purchase your tickets at specified stores near the fairgrounds. Lastly, you can also get a free ticket on the fair's opening day, by donating non-perishable food items.
Aside from purchasing standard admission tickets, you can also get Three-Day passes, which can only be purchased online, or Season Passes, in case you want to stay at the fair for at least four days. These can be purchased at the Gold Gate Box Office or online, and typically include weekday parking and concerts.
The Washington State Fair's location is 110 9th Ave. S.W., Puyallup, WA 98371. If you are traveling from Seattle via I-5 or WA-167, your ride may take around 40 minutes. I-5 can also bring you north from the Portland area in about two and a half hours. Motorists may appreciate stopping at any one of the National Forest locations on the way to the fairgrounds.
There are a few parking lots conveniently located around the fairgrounds. These are typically named by color names of the gates that are closest to them. They include Orange, Purple, Red, Green, and Gold. Aside from having the fairground parking lots at your disposal, you may also encounter private parking areas to choose from in the vicinity. When it comes to parking your RV in the campground, keep in mind that RV spaces are not specified in advance, but assigned based on availability.
If you don't want to drive to Puyallup, you will have options with local public transportation services and options coming from Seattle and Portland. Your cheapest option may be to take one of the local buses. Another option would be to take one of the trains, which serve nine stations between Puyallup and Everett. Lastly, you can always look for the most affordable taxi services or private hire transportation, for some added convenience and comfort.
Looking to do some camping during the Washington State Fair? Well, you are in luck, because the fair features a dedicated RV Park. Thanks to its location and a variety of hookup options, the Washington State Fair RV Park is perfect for anyone looking to spend some time in nature and experience the fair while enjoying the coziness and comfort of their rig.
Keep in mind that you will not be able to reserve a specific space since RV spots operate on a first-come, first-serve basis after registration. Tent camping will not be allowed, and there will be no restroom facilities available, so make sure your RV is self-contained. No disruptive or overly loud noise will be allowed during quiet hours, and pets must be leashed.
Aside from landing your RV and camping at the official fair campgrounds, you can also opt for a number of campgrounds in the vicinity. Some options are situated to the north and northwest of the fairgrounds, near the Puyallup River. Although these locations may be somewhat minimalistic, they offer an outdoorsy alternative to the official campgrounds, especially if you want to explore the natural beauty of Puyallup’s outskirts.
If you want to experience all the attractions and events of the Washington State Fair, without navigating on foot look for the People Movers (certain days), which are tractor-pulled shuttles that operate on a first-come, first-served basis and are free of charge. Also, guests can rent scooters, wheelchairs, wagons, or strollers at a few locations scattered around the fair. These can be rented with cash or a credit card, and require a credit card or a valid state ID for collateral.
The Washington State Fair begins in late August and runs through late September. Since Washington State weather can be quite tricky and fickle this time of year, guests may want to bring a mixture of clothing items. If you are planning to explore the fair during the daytime, some t-shirts, light dresses, and shoes will do just fine. If you want to check out evening entertainment or camp in nature, make sure you can layer up with a jacket or lightweight hoodie.
Since September is often one of the warmest months in the state of Washington, travelers will want to bring sunscreen and refillable water bottles to help everyone stay hydrated. If you plan to spend your time camping, don't forget to bring basic medicine, a flashlight, and bug spray, as well as your grilling equipment (check current regulations) and kitchen supplies.
Remember to pack personal prescription medications in your RV for ease of use during your trip. A first aid kit should also be at the top of your packing list. Encourage young children to respect local wildlife and be prepared to enjoy the creatures you encounter from a safe distance in all locations. Designated smoking areas are available around the fairgrounds.
Campers may want to check regulations for outdoor cooking at the campground. Hookup options vary by the campsite so filling your tanks in advance may be advisable. Guests can bring food in coolers to the campground, but regulations vary by location at the fairgrounds. Cooking will be allowed at your campsite, but not at the fairgrounds.
Don't want to cook? Don't worry, because you can satiate your hunger by visiting one of many restaurants in the vicinity of the fairgrounds. Restaurant options line the main roadway through Puyallup, Washington. Travelers can experiment with Italian, Mexican, Greek, and American style food choices within a ten-minute drive or a twenty-minute walk from the fairground areas.
With more than 700 vendors attending the Washington State Fair every year, guests can prepare for a shopping spree. Whether you are looking to buy fresh food and exotic drinks, or maybe an item for your home or a nice holiday gift, you are likely to find it somewhere around the fair. For the locations of vendors, and information about what they have to offer, don't forget to check out the event map.
To ensure the safety of all fair-goers, the Washington State Fair encourages guests to follow all security policies. Before entering the fairgrounds, guests will be checked for any prohibited items. These typically include firearms and knives, illegal drugs, alcoholic beverages, skateboards, skates, bicycles, drones, open drink containers, and laser pointers. Animals are prohibited as well, with the exception of show and service animals.
Given the time frame and the location of the Washington State Fair, you can expect lots of sunny days, albeit with some rainy periods. Local forecast information for Seattle may also be helpful if a forecast for Puyallup is not readily available. If adverse weather changes the schedule, fair authorities will issue an official statement online.
The Washington State Fair will feature a well-equipped First Aid Station, which is typically located inside the Fair Services Building. Additionally, there will also be Fire Department EMTs and three nursing stations, where parents can take care of their little ones. If you will need to have any medications with you while in the fairground, it may be advisable to inquire in advance what the different areas allow. ADA accommodations are available throughout the fairgrounds, but specific requests may best be handled by contacting the Event Promoter directly in some cases.