State County Fairs cover

🎡 2023 New York State & County Fairs

Originating from the early 1800s, state and county fairs offer a blend of 4-H competitions, agriculture, amusement, and entertainment that highlight the bountiful harvest and proudly exhibit locally-crafted goods. For over 150 years, communities have eagerly anticipated coming together in the late summer to revel in the festivities, including lively parades and shows, unique exhibits, thrilling competitions, and live music.

2023 Best of Rochester Award Winner

Day Trips Around Rochester, New York

Best of Rochester Award-Winning Book for Best Published Literary Work of 2023.

Greater Rochester County Fairs

Demolition Derbies

Yates County Fair

July 11-15, 2023, Penn Yan

Est. 1839, Yates County Fair Agriculture Society

Livingston County Fair

July 18-22, 2023, Hemlock

While not officially designated as a “Livingston County Fair,” the Hemlock “Little World’s” Fair is a fair-like event in Livingston County, featuring 4-H and agriculture-themed activities.

Est. 1903, Hemlock Lake Union Agricultural Society

Seneca County Fair

July 19-22, 2023, Waterloo

Est. 1843, Seneca County Agricultural Society

Genesee County Fair

July 22–29, 2023, Batavia

Est. 1839, Genesee County Agricultural Society

Orleans County Fair

July 24 – 29, 2023, Albion

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Orleans County

Ontario County Fair

July 25-29, 2023, Canandaigua

Est. 1843, Ontario County Fair Committee

Wyoming County Fair

August 12-19, 2023, Pike

Est. 1844, Wyoming County Fair Association

Wayne County Fair

August 14-19, 2023, Palmyra

Est. 1855, Wayne County Fair Advisory Board

Monroe County Fair

Monroe County has not hosted a county fair since 2019. It was last held in Rush, NY.

Est. 1823, Monroe County Fair and Recreation Association

County Fairs in Surrounding Areas

New York County Fairs: tractor parade
Antique Tractor Parades

Niagara County Fair

Aug 2-6, 2023, Lockport

Est. 1841, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Niagara County

Erie County Fair 

August 9-20, 2023, Hamburg

Est. 1820, Erie County Agricultural Society

Established in 1819, the Erie County Agricultural Society is the oldest civic organization in Western New York.

The fair features the World’s Largest Demolition Derby.

Steuben County Fair

August 14-20, 2023, Bath

Est. 1819, Steuben County Fair

America’s oldest, continually running fair.

The Great New York State Fair

August 23 – September 4, 2023
in Syracuse

Events around Rochester - Fireman Carnival
Midway Rides

Established in 1841 and moved to its current Syracuse location in 1890, New York operates the oldest state fair in the United States. Ours is also one of the largest, with roughly one million visitors annually, with some days seeing over 100,000 people.

The fair runs annually, beginning on the 3rd or 4th Wednesday in August and ending on Labor Day.

What is 4-H?

The four “h”s stand for head, heart, hands, and health.

According to the official 4-H website, “In 4‑H programs, kids and teens complete hands-on projects in areas like health, science, agriculture and civic engagement in a positive environment where they receive guidance from adult mentors and are encouraged to take on proactive leadership roles. Kids experience 4‑H in every county and parish in the country through in-school and after-school programs, school and community clubs and 4‑H camps.”

From the Monroe County Cornell Cooperative Extension website, “4-H is a worldwide youth development program available in every state and over eighty countries. It is open to all youth aged 5 to 19, who want to have fun, learn new skills, and explore the world. In return, youth who participate in 4-H find a supportive environment and opportunities for hands-on or “experiential” learning about things that interest them. They also get what all young people need to succeed in life–the confidence, compassion and connections with caring adults to make contributions to their communities.”

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What do you look forward to most at our state and county fairs?

Your insights and experiences are valuable. Please share them in the comments.

Debi Bower, Day Trips Around Rochester NY

Debi Bower is the founder and creative director of daytrippingroc.com and author of the award-winning book Day Trips Around Rochester, New York.

People often ask me if I get free access to places while exploring. The answer is no unless I’m invited to previews or granted behind-the-scenes access as part of my media role. Generally, I don’t mention my project, Day Trips Around Rochester, NY, because I want the same experience you would have. I create and share content simply because it brings me joy. I would appreciate your support—a cup of coffee or two to help fuel future field trips—if you have found valuable information here that has helped you explore the Rochester area.

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