The 2022 North Carolina State Fair
runs from Thursday, October 13 through Sunday, October 23 with rides, shows, crafts, farming, and frying up everything. Check out these ways to save on show admission, ride tickets and parking.
North Carolina State Fair Details
Show dates: From Thursday 13 October to Sunday 23 October
Venue of the fair: The NC State Fairgrounds is located at 4285 Trinity Rd, Raleigh, NC 27607
On Thursday, October 13, doors open at noon and Midway rides open at 1 p.m. Gates open daily beginning Friday, October 14 at 9 a.m. and Midway rides open at 10 a.m. See the show’s website
for details of ticket office opening times and closing times for each day.
Discounted entry and free days
* Children 5 and under: FREE every day
* Seniors 65 and over: $5 daily (Free admission Oct. 18. See details below)
*Group discount for 40 or more adults: $8 each available online Aug. 15-Oct. 13 or at Walk-Up Raleigh locations Sept. 29-Oct. 13
* Group discount for 40 or more youth: $4 each available online Aug. 15-Oct. 13 13 or at Walk-Up Raleigh locations Sept. 29-Oct. 13
*Military Discount: Active Duty Members, Reservists, Retirees, National Guardsmen and their dependents (ages 13-64) pay $8 at the door with proper ID presented at the counter. Veterans also benefit from the discounted price of $8 plus a discounted ticket for a guest or dependent, for a total of two discounted tickets with proper ID. Military tickets are only available at the door. Check the show’s website for a list of acceptable IDs.
Free entry for lunch on weekdays
“Visit Trinity Road Gate 9 or Hillsborough Street Gate 1 ONLY after 11.30am on weekdays. This offer is not valid at other gates or weekends.
Buy a meal card at the door for $10 cash (cash sales only).
Buy your lunch from the many fair-trade food vendors on site. Fair food vendors take money. ATMs are available inside the fairgrounds.
Return the meal card by 1:30 p.m. to the same door you entered the same day you purchased the card for a full $10 cash refund.
If you leave after 1:30 p.m., you lose your $10. The card is only valid on the day of purchase. This program is for adults only, no food is included.
Smithfield Foods Hunger Relief Day
Bring 6 cans of canned goods to the gates of the NC State Fair on Thursday, October 20, and you’ll receive a free admission ticket!
The donated food will go to The Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina.
They will distribute the cans to people in need in a 34-county region surrounding Raleigh. Since 1993, over 5.8 million pounds of food have been donated by visitors. It’s a fantastic way to get a great discount on fair admission AND help out your neighbors in need.
Pre-sale admission and discounts on ride tickets
Tour ticket sheets
Advance sale: August 15-October 13: $10 for an 18-course sheet. (Most rides require 5-6 tickets each)
At the Fair or online: October 14-October 23: $1 per ticket at Carnival box offices or $18 for a sheet of 18 tickets online
Advance sale: August 15 to October 13: $30 per bracelet
At the fair or online: October 14-October 23: $40 per bracelet
Discounts on additional journeys
There are additional discounts on advance tickets for the State Fair Flyer Chairlift ($5 one way or $8 round trip) and the State Fair SkyGazer 155′ Ferris Wheel ($6) on the show website.
Dizzying pass: For $38 get 1 FastTrack Gate Admission Ticket and 1 Unlimited Ride Wristband. It’s available for early sale only from August 15 through October 13, and must be purchased by 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, October 13.
Additional Advance Purchase Packages:
Kegs & Corks Pass ($17), State Fair Flyer Package ($32) and State Fair SkyGazer Package ($14). See the details on the show website.
Special discount and event days
North Carolina State Student Discount: On October 13, NC State students who come to the Primetime pre-fair with the pack get $8 admission with your NC State student card
Seniors Day: On Tuesday, October 18, people aged 65 and over will enjoy free entry to the fair. Plus, starting at 9 a.m., they can also enjoy free cookies and coffee from Bojangles on the Dorton Patio by the waterfall. There will be a Senior Fun Fest presented by Humana with curator Steve Troxler and music at 10 a.m.
Military Appreciation Day:
On Wednesday, October 19, Military Appreciation Day takes place with a 10 a.m. Tractor Parade, Appreciation Program, 440th Army Band and more. See the calendar of events on the show website.
Smithfield Foods Hunger Relief Day Free Ticket Day
: Bring 6 cans of food to the gates of the NC State Fair on Thursday, October 20 and you’ll receive a free admission ticket! The donated food will go to The Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina.
They will distribute the cans to people in need in a 34-county region surrounding Raleigh.
NC State Fair accessABILITY Day presented by Bandwidth:
On Sunday, October 16, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., rides and games will open at 10 a.m. and operate without lights or music. Additionally, vendors will operate without lights or music on their booths, music stages will only play acoustic sets with light amplification, and the PA system will only be used for announcements of lost visitors, according to the show’s website.
Free parking at the fair:
Free parking is available at the State Fair, Carter-Finley Football Stadium and PNC Arena properties, depending on the fair website.
Park & Ride:
There are two Park & Ride options this year, including free offsite parking at the corner of Edwards Mill and Reedy Creek and free offsite parking near Highway 54/Chapel Hill Road. Free shuttles are offered from both lots to the fair. See all the details about these options on the show website.
Free attractions and entertainment
See Additional details including new Clear Bag policy, WRAL talent schedule at the WRAL tent, new foods and more HERE.