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. As the U.S. evolved from a predominantly agrarian to an industrial society in the twentieth century, modern state fairs have expanded to include carnival amusement rides and games, display of industrial products, automobile racing, and entertainment such as musical concerts. 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.
Famous quotes containing the words state and/or fair:
“Typical of Iowa towns, whether they have 200 or 20,000 inhabitants, is the church supper, often utilized to raise money for paying off church debts. The older and more conservative members argue that the House of the Lord should not be made into a restaurant; nevertheless, all members contribute time and effort, and the products of their gardens and larders.”
—For the State of Iowa, U.S. public relief program (1935-1943)
“When it is evening, you say, It will be fair weather, for the sky is red. And in the morning, It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and threatening. You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times.”
—Bible: New Testament, Matthew 16:2,3.