Getting Here

  • Save on admission to the N.C. State Fair.
    • An easy way to save on admission to the State Fair is to come Thursday, Oct. 19, on Smithfield Foods Hunger Relief Day at the Fair. Exchange six cans of food for one free admission ticket to the Fair. The food collected benefits the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina.

    • Plan early and buy tickets in advance. FastTrack gate admission is available from Aug. 1 through Oct. 12 and tickets are $10 for adults ages 13-64, $5 for adults 65+ and $5 for youth ages 6-12. Kids age 5 and younger are free. Groups of 40 or more people can order tickets in advance for $8 each, plus a small convenience fee for online purchases. Check the Tickets page for more information.


  • You can unload and load your bus near Gate 1 located along Hillsborough Street. Enter the parking lot from Hillsborough St. and parking lot attendants or security personnel will direct you to the appropriate place to unload and load your passengers. After, you will be directed by parking attendants to our bus parking lot at Carter-Finley Stadium.

  • View a map of the fairgrounds, including the Gate 1 drop off location, by visiting our Visitor Info.

What to Bring/What's Available

  • You can bring your own diaper and lunch bags, wagons, strollers, umbrellas and other personal items to the fair, just be aware that all baggage is subject to search at the gate for weapons, glass bottles, alcohol, drugs and other prohibited materials.

Plan Your Day

The State Fairgrounds is a large space, and navigating the grounds to take in all the sites on your "to-visit" list can be a challenge without a plan, so let's get started!


  • The N.C. State Fair provides two scavenger hunts that help direct students to various educational exhibits and displays on the fairgrounds. Print out a copy to bring with you and set out to explore exhibits such as Field of Dreams, the Flower and Garden Show, Horticultural Exhibits and Heritage Circle. If you're looking for a team-building opportuinity, check out our NEW Deep Fried Bingo!

  • Most exhibits have people on hand that can answer questions and create an interactive learning experience for children. Check out our Insider Tips for "can't miss" experiences!


  • We publish a Newspapers in Education Supplement on even numbered years in conjunction with The News and Observer. Teachers can order supplements for their classroom at