So you’re thinking about going to the South Florida Fair...good for you! We just went for the first time in several years and I ended up having SO MUCH MORE FUN than I ever thought I would. Between the food, rides, exhibit halls, parade, shows, animals (did I mention the food?), it’s a day that your family is not likely to forget. And I have several tips to help you get the most out of your Fair experience!
5 Helpful Tips for Boca Parents Going to the South Florida Fair
1. Bring a Stroller
The days of the South Florida Fair being held in dirt or sand are long gone. Almost every part of the fairgrounds is paved, so there’s no reason not to take your fancy stroller. Both my 6 year-old daughter and 3 year-old nephew complained about all the walking (a la Disney), so there’s no way I would attend again without some wheels.
I can’t carry these kids after eating all the corn dogs and ribbon fries!!!
2. Be Strategic About Your Tickets & Ride Wristbands
If you’re planning on putting away as much fair food as I did, then you’ll need to save money wherever you can!
- Single admission for ages 12-59 is $15 at the gate Monday-Friday and $20 on Saturday and Sunday. So, it really pays to go during the week.
- Senior admission for 60 years of age and older is $9 at the gate.
- Child admission, under 12, is $8 at the gate (5 years and younger are always FREE).
- Admission on both Tuesdays of the fair is just $2!!!
- Ride/wristband vouchers: $25 at the gate. Valid for 25 ride coupons any day or one ride wristband any one weekday of the fair, Monday thru Friday only. Each wristband can be upgraded Saturday or Sunday for an additional $15 per voucher at any booth on the midway during the fair.
P.S. Regular parking is FREE. There is preferred parking for an additional charge.
3. Cash is Nice but Not Necessary
I am terrible about keeping cash on me. And luckily, I didn’t really feel like I needed it at the South Florida Fair this year. It’s nice to have if you want to play a game or participate in an experience that’s not covered by ride tickets or a wristband, but all of the food/drink and retail stalls at the South Florida Fair took credit cards.
The other place you might feel good about having cash on you is for tipping the bathroom attendants- FYI! And there are ATM’s everywhere just in case.
4. You Can Bring in Your Own Food/Drinks
But I don’t know why you’d want to? Unless you have picky eaters…in which case, those kids have no idea what they’re missing out on!
And Exhibit C:
But leave your hard coolers and picnic baskets at home.
In all honesty, I kind of forgot that the South Florida Fair is so much more than rides (and food).
First off, this year’s theme is “Play Ball, Play Fair.” So interactive and educational sports exhibits pave the way as you stroll through the Expo Center once you enter. The Hometown Teams exhibition, in partnership with the Smithsonian Institution and Florida Humanities, teach visitors the cultural impact and importance of the different sports in American communities. The National Baseball Hall of Fame’s “Picturing America’s Pastime” offers a snapshot of the photograph collection in the museum’s photo archive, spanning almost 150 years.
We really loved the Carnivale entertainment show by Cirque Dreams presented 3x daily in Expo Theater West. The show is a heart-pounding, non-stop, colorful explosion of athleticism, acrobatic audacity and festive imagination. Dazzling aerialists suspend from trapeze and hoops transforming into gravity-defying feats of disbelief. It was so much fun!
My family and I also enjoyed the South Florida Fair Parade! Directly from New Orleans, their parade features the world of sports, colorful costumes and of course, Mardi Gras parade floats! We caught so many beads…
All in all, we had a blast! There’s definitely something special about experiencing the South Florida Fair with your family. So make sure you attend before it all ends after February 2nd this year!
- Buildings open from noon–10 p.m. Monday through Friday.
- 10 a.m.–10 p.m. Saturday and Sunday
- 10 a.m.–8 p.m. on Sunday, Feb.2
- Carnival rides open one hour after the Fair opens each day
- Carnival rides close at 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday; midnight Friday and Saturday.
- Yesteryear Village buildings close at 9 p.m. on weeknights (Sunday-Thursday) and 10 p.m. on weekends (Fri. & Sat.)
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