The Virginia State Fair offers farming attractions for the whole family

DOSWELL (VR) – The Virginia State Fair has its roots in agriculture, and this year’s fair showcases the No. 1 industry in the Commonwealth with an expanded range of agricultural activities.

During the 10-day fair period from September 23 to October 2, visitors to the fair can educate themselves about Virginia’s agriculture and forestry through its many attractions. From live animal competitions and fairs to creative arts and culinary competitions, the state fair has agricultural connections for all ages.

“At the Virginia State Fair, visitors have the opportunity to experience farming in a fun setting and discover how it affects their daily lives,” said Marilyn Jolev, executive director of the fair. “Between enjoying nice food and taking a ride on the rides, we hope people will stop at many of the agricultural attractions and talk to a farmer or two.”

The fair kicks off with a celebration of Virginia’s dairy, September 23-25. The Dairy Days weekend will help promote the Virginia Food Bank Association’s Milk for Good initiative.

In partnership with FVFB, The Dairy Alliance, Virginia State Dairymen Association, and Dairy Club at Virginia Tech, the State Fair will present dairy-related attractions at the Meadow Pavilion. It will also sell lukewarm milkshakes, with proceeds benefiting from Milk for Good.

Additional dairy activities, including competitions, calf births and milking shows will take place at the SouthLand Dairy Farmer Center and cattle barns at The Meadow.

The Virginia Farm Office Consortium, which owns the state fair, will host an interactive educational presentation at the Meadow Pavilion. Fairgoers can take virtual farm tours at the Farm Tour Tractor Cab and learn about Virginia merchandise at the Farm Product Kiosk.

Young MacDonald’s famous ranch is back with glider ducks, chicks and other farm animals in family-focused Harvest Landing. Guests in this area can also test their agricultural knowledge through a trivia game while weighing a giant pumpkin and watermelon on September 24th.

The gardening tent at the fair will display farm and home garden products, including crops such as corn, tobacco and wheat. Plus, this is where fair-goers can see the winning giant pumpkin, which in some years weighed more than 1,000 pounds.

Virginia youths will display cattle, goats, sheep, and pigs during cattle shows benefiting the state’s Youth Scholarship Program, and fair-goers are encouraged to visit the Hero Selling Show on the second Saturday of the fair. AgriScience, Forest, Crop and Farm Equipment competitions are among other 4-H and FFA events.

The Natural Resources District will also provide exciting lessons about Virginia’s aquatic species, reptiles, and birds of prey.

At the Heritage Village, guests can admire antique tractors, steam engines, goods and household items or enjoy demonstrations of centuries-old crafts such as blacksmithing, glassblowing, rope making, and wool spinning.

Visit to purchase tickets and to see details of the show’s schedule, concert series, and free entertainment.

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