The California State Fair comes around only once a year for a very quick 17 days and highlights the Best the State has to offer in so many ways. You don\u2019t want to miss it but, you can so easily if you don\u2019t plan ahead. Save big and make it affordable with these tips on how to get in FREE, eat FREE, ride FREE, Dance FREE and save in many ways for fun for the whole family! One of the biggest misconceptions is that the Fair is so expensive. If you compare the costs to other entertainment venues or the amount of activities in one place, the proof is in the pudding. The California State Fair is very affordable. There are so many fun activities to see and experience, and its all part of the cost of admission. I\u2019ll detail those activities in a bit, but first I wanted to share how to get savings right away - buy ticket packages by Thursday , July 12th before the Fair begins on Friday, July 13. Fun Pack for 4: Only $49.99 - ($91.00 value) Season Pass: Admission everyday $35.00 + Raging Waters Water Park entry Blue Ribbon Pass: $45.00 \u2013 Admission everyday, Raging Waters, monorail rides, horseracing reserved seat and coupon book. \u201cLady Bird\u201d Experience Pass: $20.00 \u2013 Admission to the Fair + Unlimited \u201cLog Ride\u201d on the White Water ride. Stay cool and ride all day. Package based on the Oscar nominated movie filmed in Sacramento. HorseRacing Cool Experience Package: $32.00 includes Admission to the Fair and a buffet meal with fresh local vegetables, salad bar and daily pasta specials. Healthy eating and horseracing fun! (Thursday \u2013 Sunday 2:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m.) Once you are in the California State Fair pick your fun and free stuff! The savings start on Monday with SMUD Cares at the Fair Giving Monday. Receive free admission until 5:00 p.m. by donating 3 canned or dried food items. Tuesdays are the Wells Fargo $2 Rides for All and Kids Free Day. Children aged 12 or younger get FREE admission, and every ride in the carnival is only $2 no matter your age. The first Tuesday of the Fair is Poppy\u2019s Birthday Party and kids can enjoy free birthday cupcake courtesy of Save Mart. Wednesdays and Thursdays are $2 Taste of the Fair. These days, every food vendor has a sample-sized item for sale for only $2! For example, instead of buying a full-sized funnel cake or corn dog that may be too filling to finish, you can purchase a smaller version and try out more food vendors. It\u2019s the BEST way to try everything and fill up at the Fair! Thursday, July 21 is Military and Veterans Appreciation Day; all active duty military personnel and veterans, with valid I.D., receive free admission. New for 2018: spouses and dependents of active duty military also get in free before 3 p.m.., July 28 is First Responders Appreciation Day; all first responders and law enforcement, with valid I.D., get into the Fair for free. Our Expo Center exhibits are in air-conditioned buildings and include winners of the Photography, Student Showcase, Fur & Feathers, Fine Art, and Crafts Competitions. Get up-close to some cute wildlife in the Whale Tale exhibit, which includes rescued otters, an eagle, a pelican, and more. New this year in Expo Center is a unique music experience usually held at music festivals and at the club scene is now being offered for free at the Fair everyday- Silent Disco! Fairgoers wear wireless headphones and jam out to music. During the day, the music is kid-friendly and appropriate for all ages. After 5:00 p.m. the tunes shift to adult tunes supplied by dueling D.J.\u2019s. Stop by and try it for free! There are a few ways to eat for free at the Fair. All sorts of free food samples are given out in the California Building. Cheese, honey, olive oil are sampled out by some of California\u2019s best producers. If you head to the Save Mart California\u2019s Kitchen for a cooking demo, then you can usually taste what has been prepared. During Dairy Week, is ice cream day when Gunther\u2019s gives away thousands of scoops of free ice cream. Wine, Cheese, Olive Oil and Honey are a favorite at the Fair and for enthusiasts who want to know more, join the classes with experts. Well know sommeliers, olive oil producers and honey experts teach each class and give you the secret tips to the best of the best. For a small reservation fee you can save your seat or for free stand in line for open seats the day of. www.castatefair.orgfor reservations. Inside more air conditioned buildings are interactive exhibit is \u201cLife\u2019s Big Ag-Venture,\u201d a board game brought to life inside the California Building.It\u2019s life-sized board game where you are the playing piece. This project encourages interest in agricultural careers and joining Ag associated support organizations.Also in the California Building is an exhibit with National Geographic called \u201cThe Future of Food.\u201d This exhibition takes a look at how we will grow and eat in the future to meet the needs of an expanding population. One of the best kept secrets of the Fair is the Kaiser Permanente Farm presented by Save Mart. This is a 3.5 acre working farm that teaches students about produce grown in California; the food grown here is donated to the Sacramento Food Bank and Family Services. At the Farm is the Passport Program, where you check in at various stations, receive a stamp, and once your \u201cpassport\u201d is full you can turn it in for some free fruit. Kids can milk a mechanical cow \u201ccali\u201d and visit the insect pavilion showcasing \u201creal\u201d live bugs! Next to the Farm is the Forest Center where visitor can stroll through the Redwoods and feel like you are at a National Forest in the middle of the Fair. Fairgoers can walk away with a \u201cfree\u201d tree seedling and start to grow your own forest. www.castatefair.org\/farm All entertainment is free at the Fair. The Horse Arena has exciting demonstrations and performances all day long. This year\u2019s performance highlights the \u201cGreatest Showman\u201d based on the popular movie. Before and after each performance you can get up close to the horses and at scheduled times ride the horses for free. The live performances at the Promenade Stage, Blues & Brews Stage, Saloon Stage, Expo Center Stage are also free to watch and have highlight famous performers like Mick Martin, Terry Hank jazz artists, Everynight live music is performed for the Toyota Concert Series on the Golden 1 stage and seats and viewing are included in the price of admission. This year\u2019s concert line-up includes WAR, Trace Adkins, Cool & The Gang, Sugar Ray, and more. Free seats are given out on a first-come-first-served basis. Prior to the start of each concert, wristbands are given out to concert goers. Once the seating opens up, wristband wearers can get a seat inside the concert area. See the line up here www.castatefair.org\/tickets If checking out animals is what you\u2019re after, then there are plenty of options. Head over the Tractor Supply Co. Big Barn for livestock. Specialty shows with animals such as goats, sheep, swine, cattle, llamas and alpacas are brought in on a rotating schedule. Make sure you check out the free CA State Fair App to find out which animals are being showcased that day. Download the app at your apple or google store for free. Beyond the Tractor Supply Co. Big Barn is the Miller Lite Racetrack Grandstand; where you can watch live thoroughbred horse racing - just like the Kentucky Derby. Horse racing takes place Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday during the Fair. There will be special events happening at the racetrack during the Fair; most of which are free to the public, Splash Dogs, Steampunk\u2019d at the Races, and the Wienerschnitzel Wiener Dog Races are all free with admission \u2013 however, if you enter your dog..admission is included and fun for the whole family watching them compete . visit castatefair.org for information on how to sign up your animals. Steampunk is a blend of Victorian-era fashion and science fiction. Come see people, and horses, dressed up in some pretty impressive attire. The Weinerschneitzel weiner dog races run between each horse race, so find a seat and pick your favorite pooch to cheer on. The free California State Fair app is where you find out what\u2019s happening, what to eat or drink, and where to go. Download the official CA State Fair app - available on Android and Apple to schedule your day, win tickets and prizes. The app has a fun photo hunt, where you take selfies throughout the fairgrounds. Once your photo card is filled, post it to your social media, tag the CA State Fair, and head to an Information Booth for some free prizes. There are many \u201ccool spots\u201d around the California State Fair and snapping photos can be a drain on your phone\u2019s battery \u2013 don\u2019t worry! The State Fair has free \u201cCool Down, Charge Up\u201d stations. These are fast charging stations for your cell phone, located in an official Fair Cool Spot. Keeping \u201cCool is an important part of the Fair experience. You will find \u201ccool spots\u201d all over the fairgrounds from misting stations, selfie centers, charging stations, \u201ccool\u201d shopping, \u201ccool\u201d exhibits. You get the point! While you\u2019re waiting for your phone to charge, take advantage of the Fair\u2019s free Wifi, which is available throughout the Fairgrounds. Now that you have the inside tips on free and low costs ways to enjoy the California State Fair. Don\u2019t Miss a Moment July 13-29th! It\u2019s fun for the whole family with affordable options and a lot to choose from. You can\u2019t do it in one day, so the more you save, the more times you can come back and enjoy the California State Fair. Don\u2019t Miss A Moment of fun at the California State Fair - July 13 - 29.