About an hour’s drive southeast of Merced, you can find the city of Fresno where in October, the annual Fair is held. The annual Big Fresno Fair is Central Valley’s largest event that attracts over half a million visitors each year in October. It is a 2-week event (October 2 until 14) that features livestock shows, exhibits, horse racing, musical and other cultural entertainment, and interesting educational programs, just to mention a few of the activities.
The Fair is providing a link between rural and urban California and serves as an important tool in educating the residents of Central Valley about the rich agricultural history and the importance of the agricultural industry in the area.
The Fair aims to highlight the often not understood vastness and importance of this commercial activity for the region, for California, and for the entire United States. This year is the 136th Big Fresno Fair that runs in East Central Fresno until October 14th. It truly is one of the area’s biggest events of the year!
But the Fair is actually so much more than only the largest annual event in Central Valley. It is a rich and long-standing tradition for all the residents of the Valley. The fair is a family fun event with an atmosphere in which all residents create long-lasting memories. It is also important for the region’s and Merced County’s jobs and economic development.
The fair is also a great platform for the education of the community’s youth where they can advance their leadership skills and be rewarded for their achievements. The annual Big Fresno Fair features various education programs through its mission to educate, celebrate and have fun. So while you’re in the area anyway, why don’t you pay a visit to Fresno’s Forestiere Underground Garden, an exceptionally beautiful underground world of sculptures and rooms.
The Fair Education Program
The Fresno Fair organizes its annual Big Fair Education Program together with Fresno County’s Office of Education. The award-winning program provides a link between rural and urban California populations and educates Fresno County area students about the rich agricultural industry in the area and its historical relevance. The Big Fair’s Education Program is now in its 28th year and gives, as stated above, 8 to 12 graders the chance to visit the Fair at no charge. Some of them may later go to Fresno City College and here, they may already be on track towards a college education.
Qualifying students can take a tour across the buildings and learn about Central Valley’s rich and interesting agricultural heritage and partake in activities and workshops such as painting, photography, sewing, machinery, jam making, rock sculpting and many more! Over the course of the years, the Fair Education Program has provided over 500,000 teachers, chaperones, and students the chance to experience this great fun and an interesting educational field trip!
The 4.0 and Above Program
The 4.0 and Above Program allows all 8 – 12 graders in Fresno County with a cumulative GPA of 4.0 and above to attend the Fair’s Grand Opening Day for FREE, but that’s not all! All qualified students also have the chance to win great scholarships and more prizes to help them achieve academic success which, in turn, will help Central Valley’s Quality of Life Programs. Qualified 8th graders have the opportunity to laptops, iPads, Laptops, and Visa Gift cards. 9 to 12th graders have the chance to win these same prizes plus the chance to win a new 2019 Toyota Corolla.
This is an annual rally-like event in a fun atmosphere where the Fair recognizes the students’ hard work and academic achievements. This annual educational event provides campus culture directors and principals (see also this post about Fresno Academy for Civic and Entrepreneurial Leadership) with the opportunity to encourage their students to work hard all through the year and to keep up their grades if they want to win one of these fantastic prizes.
The Fair Big Band Review Competition
There is also an annual Big Band Review that takes place on the Opening Day of the Big Fresno Fair that will be held from 2 to 14 October 2019. Marching Bands from Junior High and High Schools from all across California will be competing for great cash prizes in the categories Parade, Auxiliary, Drum Major, and Percussion.
Big Fresno Fair – Fresno, California, USA (02-14 Oct. 2019)
Big Fresno Fair is held at the Fairgrounds in Fresno, California. The event showcases and highlights products and organizations like Hmong Music Festival, CDFA-Hosted Drought Forum, Derby Down, Kerman Kart Racing, Sports Car Club America, Junior Roller Derby Association, Quilt, Sports Car Club of America, Craft & Sewing Festival, Sun-Kissed Summer Festival, Fresno Chapter AutoCross, and many more etc. in the Sporting Goods, Agriculture & Forestry, Food & Beverage, and Toys & Games industries.