When: Thursday, August 10 - Sunday, August 20, 2017
Directions: East or West on E University Avenue, then follow
signs to the fairgrounds.
From its very humble beginnings in the 19th century, the Iowa State Fair later become the basis for a novel, a motion picture musical (State Fair) and, today, the event by which all other state fairs are measured.
The very first Iowa State Fair, which had a total budget of just $324, was held in Fairfield 1854. It proved too difficult for people to come to the fair from far off, and so the fair moved around to various parts of the state before settling permanently in 1878 in Des Moines.
Today, the Iowa State Fair is a highly-anticipated eleven day event held every year in late summer, attracting over a million people from within the state and across the country.
This year the fair runs from Thursday, August 10 through Sunday, August 20, 2017.
One of the most entertaining parts of any state fair is the livestock, and in this the Iowa State Fair never disappoints!
Fair-goers can take in blue ribbon contests judging the finest cattle, horses and pigs, along with sheep shearing competitions, pie eating contests, wood chopping contests, and even arm wrestling.
Another mainstay of the Iowa State Fair is the life-size butter cow which has been featured at the Iowa State Fair every year since 1960, (while spawning imitators of the sculpted butter display at practically every other state fair since.)
2017 Iowa State Fair concert lineup
Major headliners at the 2017 Iowa State Fair include
Paramore, Little Big Town,
Flo Rida and Kid Rock.
And of course, what would a state fair be without the music concert lineup?
The Iowa State Fair has enjoyed great success by sticking to its agricultural roots while also attracting some of the country's most famous entertainers.
This year, the official 2017 concert lineup was announced in March with tickets to all major events going on sale in April 2017 via Ticketmaster. The full lineup includes:
THURSDAY AUGUST 10, 8PM - for KING & COUNTRY
FRIDAY AUGUST 11, 8PM - Nickelback
SATURDAY AUGUST 12, 8PM - I Love the 90's, featuring: Vanilla Ice, Salt N Pepa, Color Me Badd, Tone Loc, Coolio, Young MC
SUNDAY AUGUST 13, 8PM - Pentatonix
MONDAY AUGUST 14, 8PM - Paramore
TUESDAY AUGUST 15, 8PM - Flo Rida
THURSDAY AUGUST 17, 8PM - Alabama, with special guest The Charlie Daniels Band
FRIDAY AUGUST 18, 8PM - Little Big Town, with special guest Seth Ennis
SATURDAY AUGUST 19, 8PM - John Mellencamp, with special guest Carlene Carter
SUNDAY AUGUST 20, 8PM - Kid Rock
Iowa State Fair concerts are usually an instant sell-out every year and tickets go FAST.
Every year, more families make it a point to travel to Des Moines to take in the most quintessentially authentic American state fair. If you're one of them, remember to plan early ...and have fun!
Chowing down at the Fair
Food, glorious food! It's a major attraction at the fair including (from top left) the world-famous life-size butter
sculpture exhibit, a tasty pork chop on a stick, old-fashioned caramel apples, and the ever-popular corn dog
(all images courtesy of the Iowa State Fair.)
More about the Iowa State Fair around the Web:
State Fair.com - The official site with information on
admission and ticket prices, food, concerts, entertainment, competition,
livestock and people watching, with directions, map and photos.