Best Places to Live

2011 10 Best Summer Fairs

State and county fairs are summertime staples in most places.

The good ones keep people coming back, year after year, to see who grew the biggest tomato, raised the fattest pig, or just to enjoy simple pleasures like funnel cake, merry-go-rounds and music. Fairs are celebrations of local agriculture, talent and traditions. Attend a fair and you'll get a glimpse of not only what, but who, makes a town tick.

The team examined fairs across the country, looking at attendance, total entertainment value and the quality of life in the community to come up with a list of what we feel are some of the best fairs the country has to offer. They got our blue ribbons. See if they get yours.

Ranking Criteria
Large annual attendance
Total entertainment value
Highly livable community
Unique attractions/events
  • 10

    Rock Springs, WY

    Population: 23,869
    Jeff Adkins

    Sweetwater County Fair

    You may know this fair by its alter-ego, Wyoming's Big Show in Rock Springs, WY. Big it is, and fans drive hundreds of miles to be a part of the Big Show. There's a reason why it's such a popular fair. There's a rodeo each day, racing events, a collection of family-friendly carnival rides, a variety of dining options, concerts, 4-H exhibits and livestock shows.

    Attendance: 80,000

    Dates: Late July through early August

    Don't Miss: the After-Dark Concert Series

    Read about more great events in Rock Springs, WY.