Are you headed out to the State Fair of Texas at Fair Park in Dallas? The Texas State Fair runs from September 30 to October 23 so why not use one of these methods to get free tickets or discounted tickets to save some money? Did you know that the Dallas State Fair & Exposition, to which the present State Fair of Texas traces its origin, was chartered as a private corporation on Jan. 30, 1886, by a group of Dallas businessmen? The State Fair of Texas® has selected 125 Years – A Timeless Tradition as the theme for the upcoming 2011 season (Sept. 30 – Oct. 23). The Fair was established in 1886 and has been the primary tenant of city-owned Fair Park since 1905. This longstanding and mutually beneficial relationship has supported construction, restoration and preservation of facilities in the 277-acre complex for more than a century. When fair-goers arrive at this year’s Fried Food Capital of Texas®, there will be more than 70 rides, 200 food locations, livestock shows, cooking competitions and the 2012 State Fair Auto Show. In addition, the Chevrolet Main Stage will feature top entertainers every weekend plus live bands throughout the week. All concerts are free for fairgoers and include headliners Randy Travis on Friday, Oct. 21 at 8:30 p.m., and The Bangles on Saturday, Oct. 22 at 8:30 p.m.
Remember: If you’re able to get to the park by 10am, you’ll have the whole place to yourselves since the crowds typically start pouring in around lunchtime. Most of the local schools get a day-off from classes to visit the State Fair and it gets packed. Here are some suggestions to get free tickets or discounted tickets to the Texas State Fair:
Opening Day September 30: Bring a 20 oz. bottle of Dasani water (or any Coca-Cola product) for donation to the North Texas Food Bank containers at fair admission gates and get in for only $5 per (per donation) per person.
Cinemark Free Thursday Admission: Bring a Cinemark Theater ticket stub and get free admission on Thursdays.
Any Day: McDonald’s offers $4 off General Admission with one of their State Fair coupons (available on tray liner or bag stuffer) any day of the Fair. A free child ticket (with purchase of general admission) coupon is also distributed by McDonald’s. Offer may not be combined with any other offer.
Seniors Free Thursdays: Senior citizens (age 60 and over) may enter for free every Thursday (September 29, October 6, 13, and 20, 2011).
Kroger/Cinemark season pass: Get a season pass at Kroger for $29.95, and it includes unlimited visits for the pass holder, one buddy pass for one visit Monday thru Friday only, and a Cinemark Movie pass good Sunday through Thursday that must be used by October 31.
Dr Pepper $5 after 5 p.m.: Bring an empty Dr Pepper can to any State Fair admission gate after 5 p.m. and enter for $5.
Kroger “Three for $2” Wednesdays: Admission is $2 for each visitor bringing three cans of food on Wednesday only for area food banks.
Coke $5 Thursdays: Bring an empty 20 oz. bottle of a Coca-Cola product and enter the Fair for $5 admission on Thursdays.
Dickies Day: Thursday, October 6, wear and show your Dickies logo clothing item at the staffed tent outside the gate and receive a voucher. The voucher is for free admission on Thursday October 6 only.
Dr Pepper $4 Tuesdays: Every Tuesday, bring an empty Dr Pepper can and enter for $4. Most rides on those Tuesdays (excluding the Thrillway, Texas Star, and selected other attractions) are 5 coupons.
Advance ticket sales online: Get a ticket online here now, for $13.95. Kids and seniors are $10.95 advance. You can even order sheets of food coupons in advance too!
DART combo ticket: Available at Kroger Food Stores, $17 buys 1 general admission to 2010 State Fair of Texas & round-trip transportation on DART the day of your visit. The Green Line drops off at front gate and a second station is located within easy walking distance to the MLK entrance. Advance ticket is $14.50 at Kroger without the DART pass. Already have a ticket and just need a ride? Read on.
DART fair pass (transportation only): You can also pre-purchase just a DART pass for $4 to use on either Saturday, October 1 or Saturday, October 8 here.
Coca Cola-sponsored student tickets: If your kid is a Dallas ISD student, they will most likely get a free ticket sent home with them. Look for it! Dallas ISD Fair Day is October 7 for elementary, and October 14 for middle and high school. (That means those kids are off school that day and being encouraged to go to the Fair with their free ticket.)
Museum of Nature & Science members: Free admission for you! Members receive a voucher this week (I got mine last week) good for free admission for two adults and up to four children. Voucher is good on any week day of the fair. You’re not a member? Join now, silly, and get your voucher!
West Side Story at the Music Hall: If you buy a ticket to the West Side Story performance at the Music Hall at Fair Park, it will include a same-day free fair admission.