PUEBLO, Colo. — The Colorado State Fair has wrapped up its 2019 run with increases in both attendance and revenue over last year. The number of visitors to this year’s fair increased by roughly five percent, and general admission revenue increased by 31 percent over 2018. Fiesta Day attendance was the largest it has been in a decade.
A total of 466,380 visitors descended on the Colorado State Fairgrounds in Pueblo over 11 days from August 23 through September 2, taking in livestock shows, fine arts and food exhibits, concerts, rodeos, fair food, entertainment, carnivals, and more.
“Part of our formula for success at the Colorado State Fair is maintaining a careful balance of history and tradition with offerings that reflect current trends and the interests of our guests,” said General Manager Scott Stoller. “In addition to excellent reception surrounding traditional fair favorites, new attractions such as our World Slopper Eating Championship, Tattoo As Art talk, Mayors Day and presentation by Temple Grandin helped drive our increased numbers this year.”
The livestock department tallied a total of 2,747 entries and 146 animals were sold at the Colorado’s Electric Cooperatives Junior Livestock Sale, earning 4-H and FFA youth a total of $506,150. The general entry/fine arts department received 3,555 entries from 936 exhibitors in categories that included fine arts, pantry, quilts, farm and garden, poetry and beer and wine. Nearly 200 commercial vendors and 46 food vendors added to the success of the fair and overall concession sales were up 4 percent from 2018.
The fair’s new 2019 attractions were well received, particularly the All-American High Dive Show featuring a flaming diver, hypnotist Richard Barker, comedian Farmer Phil, and the acrobatic Salida Circus. The Brett Young and 38 Special concerts, demolition derby, Celebración de Los Charros and World Slopper Eating Championship events pushed the Bud Light Grandstand, Southwest Motors Events Center and Pueblo Bank and Trust Pavilion venues to near capacity. The slopper eating contest, which featured Colorado beef and Pueblo green chilis, received news coverage nationwide from Maryland to Texas to California.
Discount days helped make the fair accessible to all with free and half price admission days, coupons, new free kids and senior days, and the especially popular “Twosday,” which offered $2 admission, $2 food items, $2 ranch rodeo tickets and $2 carnvial rides on Tuesday, August 27.
The theme for next year’s fair is “A Walk on the Wild Side,” and will take place August 28 through Labor Day, September 7, 2020. For more information about The Colorado State Fair, visit the fair’s website, Facebook page @colostatefair, or call 719-404-2080.
The state fairgrounds provides nearly $34 million in economic activity to Colorado throughout the year; $29 million of that activity is driven by the annual State Fair event. In addition to showcasing Colorado agriculture, the annual event features one of the country’s largest traveling carnivals, artwork, crafts, food competitions, rodeo action, a wide variety of food and merchandise booths and a Fiesta Day honoring Colorado’s Hispanic culture.
— Colorado Department of Agriculture
For more news from Colorado, click here.