County fairs are a quintessential part of summer in Greater Cincinnati, offering multiple days of livestock shows, wholesome homesteading competitions and exhibits, midway games and rides, fried food, tractors, beauty pageants and tons of demolition derbies. These seven are spread across Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky. We've also included bonus info at the end of this list about the Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana state fairs.
How many times can you ride a questionably maintained Scrambler after eating a funnel cake this summer? Let's find out.
County FairsKenton County Fair & Horse Show
Activities include flower, art and garden exhibits; barnyard olympics; beauty pageants, including for babies; horse shows; tractor pulls; and a demolition derby. July 11-16. $12 (includes rides); free for ages 2 and under. Kenton County Fairgrounds, 2836 Harris Pike, Independence, kentoncountyfair.com.
Warren County Fair
This fair dates back to 1850. Expect (tons of) animal shows, drag racing, live music, monster trucks, karaoke competitions and a cornhole tournament. Stop by the beer garden for a cold drink. Rides are free with daily admission. July 18-23. $10; $30 week-long pass; $5 track event seating; $20 demolition derby pit pass. Warren County Fairgrounds, 665 N. Broadway, Lebanon, warrencountyfairohio.org.
Butler County Fair
The Butler County Fair's grandstand events include an antique tractor pull, broken horn rodeo and several demolition derbies. There will also be a dog agility show, cake auction and men's bake off, with awards handed out for everything from best pickles and cross stitch to yeast bread and homemade wine. July 24-30. $9; $4 ages 6-12 with paying adult; $35 seven-day pass; $25 four-day pass. Butler County Fairgrounds, 1715 Fairgrove Ave., Hamilton, butlercountyohfair.org.
Clermont County Fair
Experience everything from bicycle races and a cornhole tournament to a pie auction and a roaming "Monkey Man" with a capuchin monkey. Grandstand events include a demolition derby, rodeo and truck and tractor pulls. There will also be live music from Craig Morgan (ticketed separately), Dozzi, Marsha Brady and more. July 24-30. $10. Clermont County Fairgrounds, 1000 Locust St., Owensville, clermontcountyfair.com.
Pendleton County Youth Fair
This youth fair features everything from 4-H shows, a doll buggy parade and homemade cake auction to a demolition derby, greased pig contest and chicken poop Bingo (whatever that is). July 25-30. $10 . Pendleton County Fairgrounds, 68 Fairgrounds Road, Falmouth, pcyouthfair.com.
Boone County 4-H & Utopia Fair
This fair is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year. Activities include a vintage car show, fireworks display, Miss Boone County Fair pageant, cowboy mounted-shooting show, monster trucks and nightly live music. Aug. 8-13. $12 (includes all rides); free ages 3 and under. Boone County Fairgrounds, 5819 Idlewild Road, Burlington, boonecountyfair.org.
Hamilton County Fair
The 167th Hamilton County Fair includes grandstand events like broken horn rodeo, motorcycle racing and a "soccer mom" demolition derby. There will also be rides, games, animal and vegetable exhibits and fair food. Aug. 11-14. $10 (includes rides); $5 parking. Hamilton County Fairgrounds, 7801 Anthony Wayne Ave., Carthage, hamiltoncountyfair.com.
State FairsOhio State Fair
After taking two years off due to the pandemic, the Ohio State Fair is back in Columbus this year. “This summer, all of our fair favorites will return," said Virgil Stricker, Ohio Expo Center & State Fair General Manager, in a statement. "You’ll be able to walk through the barn, see the iconic butter cow, try some deep-fried food on a stick, listen to music, browse arts exhibitions, watch performances by the All-Ohio State Fair Band and Youth Choir, visit with Smokey Bear, learn about agriculture, and so much more.” Other highlights include a petting zoo, helicopter rides, horse shows and even a free fishing pond for kids. July 27-Aug. 7. $10; $8 ages 6-12 and seniors 60+; free for children under 5; $30 all-day ride wristband. Ohio Expo Center, 717 E. 17th Ave., Columbus, ohiostatefair.com.
Indiana State Fair
Visit Indianapolis to check out a dog stunt show, fun inflatables, an Indy 500 Racing Experience, midway rides, a hot air balloon race, a rodeo and the USA Mullet Championship. Sample beer and wine from across the state while indulging in pickle pizza, deep-fried cheese on a stick and Flamin' Hot Cheeto walking tacos. July 29-Aug. 21. $10; $8 parking; $25 advance midway wristbands. Indiana State Fairgrounds & Event Center, 1202 E. 38th St., Indianapolis, indianastatefair.com.
Kentucky State Fair
The Kentucky State Fair features the World's Championship Horse Show, an entire acre of agricultural exhibits, livestock shows, border collie herding demonstrations, fair food and competitions in categories including homebrewed beer, textiles, tobacco and flowers. The Texas Roadhouse Concert Series features free daily shows from bands including Night Ranger, Trace Adkins, Niko Moon and Lee Greenwood. Aug. 18-28. $10; $10 parking. Kentucky Exposition Center, 937 Phillips Lane, Louisville, kystatefair.org.