Most Fair enthusiasts know that the best way to see the Fair (other than working there) is to get your tickets in advance. It saves you a good bit of cash and you can avoid standing in line to get your admission tickets.
Adult tickets are $5 in advance, $7 at the gate. Children’s tickets are $1 in advance, $2 at the gate. Ride sheets (18 tickets per sheet) are $10 in advance, $18 at the Fair.
Tickets have been on sale on the Internet for two months now, and starting tomorrow and going through Oct. 16 at 6 p.m., you can make stops at nine retail locations to purchase your tickets. The locations are:
- Triangle Town Center, Center Court, Raleigh (mall hours);
- Northgate Mall, Customer Service Area, Durham (mall hours);
- The Streets at Southpoint, Center Court, Durham (mall hours);
- Burlington Square Mall, Guest Services, Burlington (mall hours);
- Four Seasons Town Centre, Information Center, Greensboro (mall hours);
- Wilson Mall, Center Court, Wilson (mall hours);
- N.C. Museum of History, 5 W. Edenton St., Raleigh (museum hours);
- N.C. State Fairgrounds, Gate 9 off Trinity Road, Raleigh (10 a.m. to 6 p.m.);
- State Farmers Market, 1201 Agriculture St., Raleigh (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.).
I did a bit of math (scary for a communications major, I know). According to my calculations, a family of 4 who is buying 2 adult tickets, 2 children’s tickets and 2 ride sheets will SAVE $22 over gate prices. So it goes to show that a little bit of planning will save you real money. You can then plan to use your savings to buy your favorite Fair foods!
And while we’re on the subject of prices, I’ll go ahead and head off some comments I know I’m gonna get (and am probably inviting by even mentioning this.) Every year we get complaints that the Fair is too expensive. But I have to argue that it’s still one of the best entertainment values around, especially if you take advantage of our advance sales program. You spend less on admission that you do to see a movie and you can spend all day at the State Fair doing things for free. Yes, the food is expensive, but the prices are still cheaper than at most Triangle-area entertainment venues, including movie theaters! The good thing at the Fair is that you can shop around for less expensive food items. You can’t do that when you go to a concert or sporting event – the price is the same wherever you go. Also, did you know that you can bring your own food to the Fair with you? Yep, just don’t bring any glass onto the grounds and know that your bags are subject to be searched at the gates. And of course, as they say in the commercials, the value of your memories at the N.C. State Fair: priceless!