It’s just not summer in Buena Park without a trip to the OC Fair! The 128th year of this OC institution welcomes visitors to “Free Your Inner Farmer.” Running from July 13 through August 12 (Wednesdays-Sundays), there’s plenty of time to check out all of your favorite rides, performers, pig races and the livestock auction. This year’s Fair brings tons of new foods, stunt shows, a selfie exhibit and more. Check out all of our tips and tricks to make the most out of your visit to the OC Fair!
What’s New for 2018
Whether this is your first visit to the OC Fair or you make it a regular part of your summer schedule, it’s helpful to know what’s new and hot at the Fair this year. As soon as you enter the gates you’ll see the 16-foot tall murals by artist John Cerney, Gigantic Farmers: Bounty of the County. These murals depict local farmers and ranchers and bring a bit of California history and farm flair to Fair visitors.
Get ready to have your mind blown! You’ll be on the edge of your seats at the live-action Daredevils & Wheels stunt show that features the Globe of Death steel ball, Vortex of Doom aerial platform raceway and a motorcycle high wire. Then prepare to be amazed by the Bravemind exhibit at Heroes Hall – this new exhibition will show how a virtual reality technology from USC is helping veterans overcome PTSD in the real world.
Kansas farmers turned YouTube singing sensations the Peterson Farm Bros will give Fair guests a unique view of real life on the farm in 2018, set to the tune of your favorite radio hits. Then swing by the Selfie Pop-up Museum and create some Instagram-worthy pics with your crew.
It’s no secret that many people come to the OC Fair for the food. Start your foodie adventure off by joining one of the four free daily Culinary Crawls that take fairgoers through a mini version of OC's curated culinary offerings featuring insider info and tastings. Start saving up your calories as 2018 brings delightful treats like chocolate pasta, a spaghetti donut, the pineapple-and-pork "Pine and Swine" sourdough bread, frozen Reese's cream pies, deep-fried filet mignon on a stick, spicy fried cheese curd chips and Bomb Pops in a cup. Cool off and visit the Craft Bar where farm-to-bar mocktails (and cocktails after dark) will include hand-picked garden ingredients sure to refresh and inspire (and locally-crafted spirits from San Clemente's Drift Distillery).
Tips & Tricks for Making the Most of Your OC Fair Visit
Buena Park is the perfect home base for your OC Fair visit. Avoid the traffic and parking headaches by riding the OC Fair Express on Saturdays and Sundays.This shuttle picks you up from the Fullerton Park & Ride, which is just a few miles from Buena Park. It costs you only $2 each way to ride the shuttle (75 cents for seniors) and kids 5 and under ride free. Best of all, the shuttle gets you $10 OFF OC Fair admission!
Active-duty military and veterans receive free OC Fair admission and are eligible to purchase up to six half-price general admission tickets. First Responders and Law Enforcement Week is August 8-12 when active-duty and professional staff of the police, sheriff, fire and emergency services departments receive free admission.
Kids get in free every Thursday and can earn up to three free carnival rides when they participate in the Read & Ride program. Thursday is also Overalls Day where those wearing overalls get free admission before 3 p.m. Bring a specified donation on Wednesdays and get free admission until 3 p.m. with We Care Wednesdays.
Carnival rides your thing? There are tons of ways to maximize your fun at the Fair while decreasing the cost. Get unlimited ride wristbands for $35 each on Wednesdays and Thursdays (sold until 4 p.m., valid until 8 p.m.). Come early on Saturdays and Sundays for half-price general admission and enjoy carnival rides for half the tickets until 1 p.m. Or take advantage of Sunday Fun Day and get half-price admission and $35 unlimited ride wristbands (sold until 1 p.m.; valid until 4 p.m.) for ultimate family fun.
Everything sounds good but not sure what to eat? Head to the OC Fair on Thursdays where $3 sample food items are available until 4 p.m. Also, when you come to the Fair to see a show, all reserved seats in the Pacific Amphitheatre, The Hangar and Action Sports Arena include free Fair admission.
Check out the OC Fair discounts page for details on these and other available discounts. We look forward to seeing you at the OC Fair!