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Oklahoma Hall of Fame Publishing

The Oklahoma State Fair: A History

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By Bob Burke and Gini Moore Campbell 

For more than 100 years the Oklahoma State Fair has been providing something for every visitor that passes through its gates. While some head to the Midway for the ride of a lifetime or to Food Row for an Indian Taco, others explore the newest models the automobile industry has to offer or the latest in farm equipment and machinery. Exhibition buildings offer everything from hot tubs and storage sheds to clothing and Made In Oklahoma products. The arena hosts bull and bronc riding, along with Disney On Ice. And its equine facilities have earned it the title of “Horse Show Capital of the World.”

The OKC Fairgrounds is much more than a mecca for entertainment, it is an economic powerhouse, attracting over two million visitors annually and providing an influx of more than $325 million. In addition to putting Oklahomans to work, restaurants, hotels, shopping malls, and other local attractions benefit greatly by this 21st Century Tourism Destination. The Oklahoma State Fair and the OKC Fairgrounds continue to invest in those that call Oklahoma home. During the COVID-19 global pandemic tens of thousands of Oklahomans were tested and received vaccinations at the Bennett Event Center. Annually, high school students

earn scholarships to continue their education and teachers are provided with resources to supplement their efforts in the classroom.

With a commitment to growth and expansion, the physical landscape of the OKC Fairgrounds will continue to evolve and with that comes countless new opportunities for Oklahomans of all ages. We look forward to seeing you “at the Fair!”

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