Ohio State Fair

Ohio State Fair | Girl About Columbus

So I had to venture to the Ohio State Fair this past weekend… the weather was just to die for! Apparently, a lot of other Ohioans had the same idea as the attendance was record-breaking at an unofficial 903, 824 attendees for the 12-day event. Every time I go to a fair, I feel a sense of history, tradition, and summer memories.

Suitably, I thought I would share a bit of state fair history (credits to the Ohio State Fair website, link above):

– The first Ohio State Fair was a 3 day event and was held in Cincinnati in 1850. (admission was a steep 20 cents!)
– The first state fair in Columbus was held on the grounds of Mt. Carmel West.
– The fair moved around Ohio to provide easier access for everyone until the railroad system improved and then it settled in the capital city in 1874.
– The state fairgrounds in Columbus (aka Ohio Expo Center) have hosted the fair since they were completed in 1886.
– In 1896, the Ohio State Fair became the first fair to ever have an electric lighting system (so cool).
– How many of you have seen the beloved butter cow and calf? The first sculptures were featured at the fair in 1903.
– Schmidt’s Sausage Haus stand opened in 1914 (it’s supposedly the “second oldest food concessionaire” at the state fair per Schmidt’s). Anyone know what the oldest is?
– The state fair was cancelled per The Board of Agriculture during World War II from 1942-1945.
– In 1976, a time capsule was buried in honor of America’s bicentennial. It will be opened in 2026.

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