State Fairs

State Fairs

About State Fairs

A state fair is an annual competitive and recreational gathering of a U.S. state's population, usually held in late summer or early fall. It is a larger version of a county fair, often including only exhibits or competitors that have won in their categories at the more-local county fairs. State fairs began in the nineteenth century for the purpose of promoting state agriculture, through competitive exhibitions of livestock and display of farm products. Large fairs can admit more than a million visitors over the course of a week or two. The first U.S. state fair was that of New York, held in 1841 in Syracuse, and has been held annually to the present year. The second state fair was in Detroit, Michigan, which ran from 1849 to 2009.Events similar to state fairs are also held annually in each state capital in Australia, known as Royal Shows. Australian Royal shows are organized by state agricultural and horticultural societies, and are described further in the agricultural show article.