It’s Almost Time for the Manatee County Fair!

From fried Oreos and funnel cakes to midway rides and a petting zoo, there’s plenty to love about the Manatee County Fair! The 2020 season kicks off on January 16th and it promises to offer something for everyone. Here’s what you can expect during the eleven-day event (January 16th – 26th).

Attractions & Entertainment

There’s no shortage of things to do, see, and eat at the fair. This includes arts and crafts, horticulture displays, exhibit buildings, and youth attractions.

The livestock arena is one of the most popular attractions at the fair. Here you’ll find a wide variety of animals including cows, pigs, horses, rabbits, dogs, and goats. The 4-H and FFA Clubs also sponsor livestock judging and a hay bale decorating contest.

The entertainment tents and main stage will feature both local and national acts. This includes Restless Heart’s 35th Anniversary Tour, American Christian band Unspoken, Elvis Impersonator Billy Lindsey, Andrew Stanley Family Comedy Night, and country music singer Tony Jackson.

New this year, they’ll also have a Three Ring Super Circus! These acts are sure to impress children, teens, and adults alike. The night shows promise to be especially exciting with a booming sound system, fog machine, and a state-of-the-art light and laser show.

Fair visitors will also enjoy daily shows and strolling acts including magic shows, lumberjack shows, a “bubble factory” and more. The kids will love the petting zoo and pig races!

Food & Rides

Nothing says “county fair” like a huge variety of fun foods! As always, there will be vendors throughout the fairgrounds.

From favorites like pizza, cotton candy, and elephant ears to unexpected treats like seafood, fudge, and more, you’re sure to find plenty of options to delight your palate. If you’re feeling adventurous, you might even want to sign up for this year’s corndog eating contest.

Midway rides provided by Belle City Amusements are always a huge hit among visitors of all ages. Make sure to check out the armband specials so you can enjoy all the rides for a single price. The times and prices vary and range from $15 to $25. You’ll find all the details here

Pricing & Specials

Daily admission prices are:
$10 for adults (age 13+)
$9 for seniors (age 55+)
$6 for active military (with valid ID)
$6 for children (age 6 – 12)
FREE for children 5 and under

On the first day of the fair (January 16th) adult admission is just $6 and kids are only $3. 
January 20th is “Kids Day” sponsored by Superior Asphalt. From noon until 3 p.m. all children and students with a valid ID get in for free.
On January 21st, all fairgoers get in for free between 5 and 10 pm, thanks to a sponsorship by PalmettoBuild. 
Seniors age 55+ can visit the fair for just $6 on “Senior Day,” January 22nd, between noon and 10 pm. 

Getting There

The Manatee County Fairgrounds are located at 1303 17th St. W., Palmetto, FL 34221 (across the street from Palmetto High School). Paid parking is available, you can check out the parking map here. You’ll also want to visit the Manatee County Fair Facebook page so you can keep up on all the cool things they have going on throughout the year! 

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