Kids of every age can play, learn and immerse themselves in camping and forestry life. There are fun ways that teach about camping and hiking safety and all the wonderful species that live in the California National Parks. Daily crafts, contests and games are at the Rangers Station Theatre. Tip: There is even more fun for kids in the nearby California Fresh exhibit.
Painted faces: There are two face painting booths where fairgoers can be transformed into superheroes, favorite animals or flower-festooned fairies. Also look for henna and festival glitter booths for more temporary body art.
Animals you can cheer on: One of the Fair’s most popular attractions is the All-Alaskan Pig Races, located this year in the Plaza Pacifica area. The races are a hoot for all ages, and take place daily. Plus, the Oasis Camel Dairy exhibit will be in the livestock area for the final two weeks of the fair and families can watch the babies and learn all about these exotic creatures.
Food and treats: $3 Taste of the Fair Food is offered on Thursdays until 4 p.m., giving fairgoers a chance to try select samples of food from every vendor for just $3 each – and these are the perfect size for the kids as well! It’s a great way to try the foods without filling up on too much sugar. To just look at sugar, check out the sugar arts winners on display in the OC Promenade – the cakes are amazing.
Shop for fun: The Carnival of Products and Parade of Products have some toy booths and clay fun, plus plenty of family items for purchase. There are also great shopping options in Crafters Village where artisan and other shops sell everything from fossils to sun hats.
No lines in the mornings: This year the OC Fair is opening at 10 a.m. for two bonus hours of fun. Parking is a breeze, no lines for rides and games and there is plenty of elbow room.
Safety: Find a landmark and designate it as a meeting place if you plan on separating. Be aware that the Guest Services and Lost & Found offices are located to the right of The Hangar building.