SAN DIEGO — The San Diego County Fair officially kicks off Wednesday, bringing crazy food options, jaw-dropping rides, star-studded performances and more.
Here is what you need to know if you are headed to the Del Mar Fairgrounds to join in on the fun.
The San Diego County Fair runs from June 7 through July 4. The fair opens daily at 11 a.m. and closes at 10 p.m. on weekdays and Sundays. On Friday and Saturday, the fair will stay open until 11 p.m.
During the month of June, the fair will be closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.
An opening ceremony will be held Wednesday, June 7 at 10:45 a.m. ahead of the fair’s opening with Hilltop High School’s Emerald Effect Band & Color Guard Performing the National Anthem and several local Girl Scout and Daisy Troop groups leading the Pledge of Allegiance for fairgoers in attendance.
Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased ahead of time online or at the admissions entrance in-person while supplies last. Fair officials encourage attendees to buy their tickets in advance to avoid the line.
The San Diego County Fair will be a cashless venue again in 2023. This includes admission, parking and carnival rides and games.
Children ages five and under get free admission to the fair, with children ages 12 and under offered free admission on Fridays.
Adult and senior tickets range from $12 to $20 depending on the day. You can find more ticket information here.
Looking for a deal? There are a variety of discounts available for admission, parking, public transportation, rides and games.
The theme for the 2023 edition of the fair is “Get Out There!” and will celebrate the variety of outdoor experiences that San Diego County has to offer.
Scavenger hunts, educational opportunities about California’s National and State Parks, campfire cuisine and “Fair Camp” games, will all be part of the “Get Out There” theme.
As part of the theme, fair officials are holding a photo challenge encouraging fairgoers “to explore the great outdoors and get s’more of what life has to offer.”
The lucky outdoor adventurer will win a VIP experience for four with Switchfoot on July 3 and a $500 gift card for recreational gear from Dick’s Sporting Goods.
You can find more information on the “Get Out There!” Challenge here.
Parking and transportation
All parking lots for the fair open at 10 a.m. at the Del Mar Fairgrounds and off-site lots at the Del Mar Horsepark and Torrey Pines High School.
General parking at the fairgrounds is $20, but you can save $5 by purchasing a parking pass online in advance.
Free shuttle service is available at the off-site parking locations. Parking at the Horsepark is $10 and parking at Torrey Pines High School is free.
Preferred parking is also available for $50.
If you are looking to take public transportation to the fair, the North County Transit District (NCTD) and the San Diego Metropolitan Transit System (MTS) are offering their Fair Tripper deal again this year.
The Fair Tripper can be purchased through the Pronto app or at MTS trolley and NCTD Coaster machines. The ticket includes a round trip ride on the MTS trolley, a transfer to a NCTD Coaster to the Solana Beach Station and entry to the San Diego County Fair, all at a reduced price. A free shuttle from the station to the fair is available exclusively for transit riders.
The food options at the San Diego County Fair are one of the main attractions that fairgoers come to try every year.
Giant turkey legs, deep-fried Oreo’s and pretty much anything at Chicken Charlie’s are well-known fair food staples, but there are even more new options to try in 2023.
Deep-fried pot stickers rolled in Hot Cheetos and deep-fried s’mores are just a few interesting food options being served.
Rides and games
Another thing guests can partake in are the wide variety of rides and games.
In total, there will be over 80 rides for guests to try at the fair in 2023 ranging from family-friendly to high-flying.
Several new rides will make their fair debut in 2023, like The Joker 360, a giant pendulum that swings riders in all directions.
Dozens of carnival games will be at the fair for you to test your luck and win some prizes too.
Several rides and games packages and passes are available here.
The San Diego County Fair Concert Series is packed with major acts taking the stage in 2023.
Train will be kicking off the concert series on June 7 at the Corona Grandstand Stage. Tickets range from $40 to $95 for the opening performance.
Some other notable acts performing this year include Kevin Hart, Lynyrd Skynrd, Nelly, Switchfoot and more.
No matter what you want to do, San Diegans will have no shortage of options to “Get Out There” and enjoy the fair.