1. Enjoy The Dairy Council’s Ice Cream Festival
If the vast selection of fried foods does not appeal to you, consider buying a ticket to the Dairy Council’s Ice Cream Festival. With vendors from across the state, a $3 ticket for adults and a $2 ticket for children buys you all the ice cream you can eat. Revel in sweet treats from Aggie Ice Cream, BYU Creamery, Creamies, and more. The 35th year of the event also features music and dairy trivia to entertain fair-goers as they satisfy their sweet tooth. Stop by on Monday, September 12 from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. for the coolest part of the Utah State Fair.
2. Make new farm-raised and high flying friends
From cows and pigs groomed to win top prizes to acrobatic dogs, the fair is bustling with furry creatures. Little Hands on the Farm, an opportunity for children and their families to partake in the duties of farm life, allows city-dwellers the hands-on experience of milking a cow. If you are searching for the dog lover’s haven, The Canine Stars are set to perform their gravity-defying stunts every night of the fair for those who cannot get enough of man’s best friend. The fisherman, the farmer and the dog lover are all invited to enjoy the company of country critters
3. Participate in the year-end butterfly release
Over 200 butterflies will be spreading their wings and flying to California during one of the fair’s most popular traditions. An exhibit showcasing the life cycle of the Monarch butterfly and live Monarch chrysalises will be on display to teach those interested about their transformation for the duration of the fair. Attendees will also be able to watch and participate in their release on Saturday, September 17 at 4:15 p.m. This is your last chance to see Monarch butterflies before they migrate to California for the winter, so be there with your camera ready.
4. Get tickets for The Big Top Circus Spectacular
The candy-cane stripped tents are set up and are already producing the exciting rhythms of the circus. For a nostalgic experience you cannot find anywhere else, the Utah State Fair has brought back The Big Top Circus Spectacular. This year is star-studded with performances from “America’s Got Talent” contestants The Sensational Zeman Duo and Cirque du Soleil’s Pedro Carillos and Partners. The show is held three times a day and free seating tickets are distributed at select locations beginning two hours before the event.
5. Visit the annual cow-themed butter sculpture
Perhaps Utah State Fair’s most talked about feature is their creative sculptures made entirely of butter. Commissioned sculptor Debbie Brown is set to reveal a new design this year, and it is surely cow-themed. Past years have featured a cow wedding, a super hero-themed Bat Cow, and, last year, a cow punk band. Starting in 2011, the Dairy Council decided to begin a contest among Utah schools where students across the state submit sculpture ideas. If their design is chosen, the student receives tickets to the fair and ice cream festival as well as Dairy Council swag. The sculptures are located in a display refrigerator located in the Creative Arts building and is a must-see for any Utah State Fair first-timers.