Family Activities in Indiana

100 FREE Things To Do at the 2018 Indiana State Fair

1.     Challenge your friends to a game of putt-putt golf

  • FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 8AM – 9PM

2.    See if your kiddos can reel in the catch of the day at the DNR Fishing Pond

  • DNR Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 12PM, 4PM – 7PM

3.    Take a ride on the Indiana State Fairgrounds Architectural Trolley Tour

  • DNR Building
  • Dates/times vary

4.   Decide on your favorite hot air balloon and cheer it on at the Giant Hot Air Balloon Race

  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/3 – 6:30AM

5.    Watch the Indiana State Fair Parade

  • Main Street
  • Daily, 6:30PM – 7PM

6.   Discover unique talents during 4-H Performing Arts

  • 4-H Exhibit Hall
  • 8/3 & 8/4 – 6PM

7.    Visit beautiful butterflies at the Butterfly Exhibit

  • DNR Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

8.    Meet and pet baby goats

  • Goat Mountain
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

9.   Visit Pioneer Village and be transported back into the 1800s!

  • Pioneer Village
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

10. Hop to the Northwest Pavilion to find rabbits & baby bunnies, along with hatching chicks

  • Northwest Pavilion
  • 8/3-8/5, 8/17, 8/18, 9AM – 9PM

11.   Attend the King Arthur Flour Scone Contest

  • Indiana Arts Building
  • 8/10 – 12PM

12.  Always wanted to create your dream backyard? Learn more about creating a backyard habitat

  • DNR Building
  • 8/13 – 2PM

13.  Take a self-guided trail around the Fairgrounds – pick up maps for The Wonder Trail pres. by Citizens Energy at Animal Town pres. by Indiana Farm Bureau or any State Fair Information Booths presented by Prairie Farms.

  • Around the Grounds
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

14. Tour the Indiana History Train presented by Indiana Historical Society

  • MetroPCS Family Fun Park
  • Daily, 9AM – 8PM

15.  Let your youngsters take on the role of a farmer for the day by participating in Little Hands on the Farm presented by CollegeChoice 529 Direct Savings Plan

  • MetroPCS Family Fun Park
  • Daily, 9AM – 8PM

16. Observe all the excitement of an auction at the 34th Annual Old Time Farm Auction

  • CountryMark Opry House Stage
  • 8/18 – 9AM

17.  Learn about water preservation and conservation at the Pathway to Water Quality Exhibit

  • Pathway to Water Quality presented by Indiana American Water, south of the MetroPCS Family Fun Park
  • Daily, 9AM – 7PM

18.  Meet the Indiana State Fair Queen, Audrey Campbell, at Introduction to Royalty: Our Indiana County Fair Queens!

  • Indiana Arts Building
  • 8/12 – 4:30PM

19. Marvel at the giant cheese sculpture sculpted by Sarah Kaufmann “The Cheese Lady” and presented by American Dairy Association Indiana Inc.

  • Purdue Extension Ag/Hort Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

20.  Stop by Hunter’s Honey Farm

  • Purdue Extension Ag/Hort Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

21.  Take in fair festivities as you walk across the scenic Covered Bridge

  • Near the Midway at the west end of the Fair
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

22.  See beautiful works of art created by local artists

  • Indiana Arts Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

23.  Hear from Gene Stratton-Porter – an Indiana author, naturalist, and conservationist

  • DNR Building
  • 8/5 – 11AM

24.  Have a fear of spiders? Conquer it and learn about nature’s nasties up close

  • DNR Building
  • 8/6 – 11AM

25.  Attend a Featured Farmer Chat presented by Corteva Agriscience

  • Glass Barn pres. by Indiana Soybean Farmers
  • Daily, 2:30PM

26.  Watch woodworkers make chairs, toys, and more in Pioneer Village

  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary

27.  Get involved in STEM & FFA interactive activities

  • FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

28.  Play corn hole or do a scavenger hunt to win a prize

  • Farm Bureau Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 7PM

29.  Determine who can spit a watermelon seed the farthest at the Watermelon Seed Spitting Contest

  • Purdue Extension Ag/Hort Building
  • Daily, 1PM

30.  See your favorite local celebrities at the Celebrity Milking Competition

  • East end/side lot of Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/15 – 11:30AM

31.  Witness Vintage Farm Machinery in Action

  • Pioneer Village
  • Daily, times vary

32.  Join us for the kick-off to the 2018 Fair at the Opening Ceremonies

  • Big Top Circus Tent
  • 8/3 – 8:30AM

33.  Visit the Purdue Extension-Marion County Demonstration Garden

  • DNR Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

34.  Listen to Sounds of the Andes with Inkapirka

  • Indiana Arts Building
  • Daily, 11AM – 10PM

35.  Let your kiddos design or color their very own quilt square

  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary

36.  Channel your inner fashionista at the Vintage Fashion Show

  • Indiana Arts Building
  • 8/4 – 1PM

37.  Indulge in the fun of celebrating ice cream and watch the World Championship Ice Cream Eating Contest

  • ENOUGH Plaza
  • 8/5 – 2PM

38.  If you’re feeling brave, take a look at a Snakes Alive Talk

  • DNR Building
  • Daily, 10AM

39.  See how butter is churned!

  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary

40. Find out the difference between a llama and an alpaca at the 4-H Llama and Alpaca Show

  • Pop Weaver Youth Pavilion
  • 8/3 – 3PM, 8/4 – 8AM

41. Calling all future veterinarians – watch a live veterinary surgery

  • Purdue Vet Medicine
  • Dates/times vary

42.  Experience the Take Flight Raptor Show with Naturalist Mark Booth

  • DNR Building
  • Dates/times vary

43.  Create beautiful flowers out of paper

  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary

44.  Watch Light Up the Night, featuring the Illuminated Tractor Parade & Hot Air Balloon Night Glow

  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/3 – 9PM

45.  Watch and learn from the best at the Youth Talent Contest

  • Farm Bureau Building
  • Dates/times vary

46.  Live dangerously and enjoy the Taste of the Wild Cookout

  • DNR Building
  • 8/4 – 11AM

47.  Listen to special music at the piano

  • Pioneer Village
  • 8/11 & 8/12 – 11:30AM

48.  Sign up to win free popcorn for a year!

  • Farm Bureau Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 7PM

49.  Visit the Indiana State Department of Agriculture Exhibit to learn more about agriculture in Indiana in an exciting way

  • Normandy Barn
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

50.  Get crafty and make a prairie doll

  • Pioneer Village
  • 8/6 & 8/13 – 4:30PM

51.  See what Indiana Birds of Prey are all about

  • DNR Building
  • 8/10 & 8/17 – 4:30PM

52.  Be present at one of the fair’s greatest traditions – the Indiana State Fair Tractor Pull

  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/12 – 2PM & 6PM

53.  Attend the Baton Twirling Contest

  • Farm Bureau Building
  • 8/12 – 10AM

54.  Try your hand at making a bead necklace with Johnny Appleseed

  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary

55.  Cheer on your favorite horse & jockey at Grand Circuit Harness Racing featuring the Fox Stake

  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/8 – 6PM

56.  Be exhilarated by the madness happening at the Monster Truck Show

  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/16 & 8/17 – 7PM, 8/17 – 1PM

57.  Stop by the recharge stations – charge devices for FREE at any location around the Indiana State Fair!

  • Around the Grounds
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

58.  Fulfill your cravings at Taste from Indiana Farms

  • Farm Bureau Building
  • 8/14, 8/15, 8/16, 11AM

59.  Take part in Girl Scouts activities

  • Girl Scouts of Central Indiana Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

60. Visit the Celebrating Indiana’s Circus History exhibit

  • Ball State Harvest Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 8PM

61. Relax and unwind with hands-on activities at the WGU Indiana Parklet

  • West end/side lot of Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

62.  Browse the merchandise and apparel at the new and improved Indiana State Fair gift shop locations

  • South – in front of the Indiana Farmers Coliseum
  • North – in front of the FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

63.  View LIVE nature shows at the DNR Amphitheater

  • DNR Building
  • Dates/times vary

64.  Take a stroll through Exposition Hall and browse the various vendor booths

  • Exposition Hall
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

65.  Learn about chainsaw troubleshooting and sharpening

  • Pioneer Villages
  • 8/8 & 8/15 – 1:30PM

66.  Hand piece a quilt square in the sewing corner of Pioneer Village

  • Pioneer Village
  • 8/8, 8/12, 8/15, 10AM

67.  21 and over? Sip some free samples of Indiana’s best beer, wine & spirits

  • Indiana Beer, Wine & Spirits pres. by Visit Indiana
  • Daily, Sunday-Friday, 12PM – 9PM
  • Daily, Saturday, 11AM – 9PM

68.  View historical artifacts and exhibits, along with old-time ice cream treats and an antique pharmacy

  • Hook’s Museum & Soda Fountain
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

69.  Watch a home be constructed for a family in need

  • Habitat for Humanity AG Home Build, north of FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 7PM

70.  Observe Mango and Dango and the Adventures of the Flying Umbrella Ship

  • Around the Grounds
  • 8/3-8/12, 2PM – 7PM

71.  Visit Indiana’s Urban Garden/Take-Out Garden and complete the scavenger hunt to receive a free garden kit to take home and plant!

  • Greenhouse
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

72.  Tour the historic harness racing barns and learn how harness racing helped shape the Hoosier agriculture scene

  • Speed Barns – Barn 7
  • Daily, 10AM – 7PM
  • No visits 8/8-8/9

73.  View a variety of dancers and try to dance along

  • Dance Stage
  • Daily, times vary

74.  Explore Lotto Town underneath the Hoosier Lottery Grandstand

  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

75.  Make your way on down to the Indiana State Fair Championship Rodeo

  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/14 & 8/15 – 7:30PM

76.  Appreciate various sweet cars during the Indiana State Fair Open Car Show

  • Main Street
  • 8/19, 10AM – 3:30PM

77.  See what the Ninja Experience is all about!

  • MetroPCS Family Fun Park
  • Daily, 12PM, 3PM, 6PM

78.  Learn about healthy cooking at the Little Red Door Cancer Agency’s Eat Well, Live Well, Cooking Demos

  • Purdue Extension Ag/Hort Building
  • Daily, 1PM

79.  Work and view an old thrasher farm machine and much more in Machinery Field

  • Pioneer Village
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

80.  Seek greater heights at the Over the Top Pole Vaulting Meet

  • State Fair Blvd
  • 8/4, 8AM – 8PM

81.  It would be baaad if you missed the 4-H Market Lamb Show

  • Elements Financial Blue Ribbon Pavilion
  • 8/4 – 8AM

82.  Devour the famous free popcorn

  • Farm Bureau Building
  • Daily, 12PM – 5PM

83.  Step back in time and browse the Country Market to get your shopping in!

  • FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

84.  See International Circus Superstar Bello Nock at Big Top Circus, presented by Bee Window

  • Big Top Circus Tent
  • Daily, 1PM, 4PM & 7PM
  • No 1PM performance on Thursdays

85.  Not sure what ewes are? Find out at the Breeding Ewe Showmanship

  • Elements Financial Blue Ribbon Pavilion
  • 8/9 – 9AM

86.  Visit and pet an array of livestock animals at Animal Town pres. by Indiana Farm Bureau

  • East end of Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

87.  Show your patriotism at the Daily Flag Raising Ceremony

  • Pioneer Village
  • Daily, 9AM

88.  Take a picture at night of the giant ferris wheel adorned in 10,000 lights

  • Midway presented by Mattress Firm
  • Daily, 11AM – 10PM

89.  Be smart, stay safe, and wash your hands! Visit one of our hand-sanitizing stations or restrooms

  • Around the Grounds
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

90. See a unique, international food charity competition display – Canstruction!

  • Ball State Harvest Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

91. Immerse yourself in Youth Interactive Stations

  • 4-H Exhibit Hall
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

92.  Attend the Liar’s Contest presented Storytelling Arts of Indiana

  • Pioneer Village
  • 8/3 – 7PM

93.  Hear a variety of entertainment and music acts on the Chevrolet Free Stage

  • Chevrolet Free Stage
  • Daily, times vary

94.  Dance the day away at the Traditional Arts Indiana State Fair Fiddle Contest

  • CountryMark Opry House Stage
  • 8/18 – 3PM

95.  See true BBQ cooking talent come out at Shoup’s BBQ Contest

  • State Fair Blvd
  • 8/11, 9AM – 5PM

96.  See all of your favorite animals at the Petting Zoo

  • FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

97.  A fan of canned ham? Check out the Great American SPAM Championship

  • Indiana Arts Building
  • 8/18 – 11:30AM

98.  Take a picture under the famous Midway sign and post it on social media for all your friends to see. Don’t forget to hashtag #indystatefair!

  • Midway presented by Mattress Firm
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM

99.  Do you like country music and dancing? You’ll fit right in at Country Dancing For All!

  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary

100.  Cool off on a hot, summer day at the giant mist fans!

  • Around the Grounds
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM