State Fair returning to 13 days next year, Governor Hochul says

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ALBANY, N.Y. (WSYR/WTEN) — Governor Kathy Hochul has returned the New York State Fair next year once again to a 13-day schedule of fairgoers while supporting greater coordination with our county and youth fairs.

Gov. Hochul supports the suggestion of State Fair Director Troy Waffner, by returning the State Fair back to a 13-day duration next year, which despite the 18-day run of 2021, had an attendance of 798,095 its lowest since 1985.

“I think 13 days was a good run of the Fair, very sustainable,” Waffner said. “I think it would be a wise move to go back to it.”

The benefit of the shorter Fair is the ability for exhibitors and vendors to attend either the massive Erie County Fair or the Delaware County Fair and then travel to Syracuse for the State Fair, Waffner said. The overwhelming opinion comes from his Fair employees, vendors, exhibitors, and Fair visitors.

“When the dates overlapped in 2021, some of those vendors backed out of the State Fair,” said Waffner.

It’s the first Fair since 2015 to not attract more than 1 million guests. The 2021 Fair’s daily average is 41,250 people, the lowest daily average since 1941, Waffner said.

Gov. Hochul, a native of Erie County, will call for a state-wide review of county fairs and the State Fair to increase marketing and promotion for smaller fairs.

The review will also include studying smoking policies at the State Fair. A common complaint of the 2021 event was the amount of marijuana smoked on the fairgrounds.

The 2022 event will run from Wednesday, August 24 to Labor Day, Monday, September 5.

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