100 free activities at the 2019 Indiana State Fair

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Where can you watch a world-renowned circus performance, pet baby goats, and meet your favorite superheroes all in one place? The answer is the Indiana State Fair!

Oftentimes, the state fair can have a reputation of being expensive, but actually, there are more than 100 free things to do daily!

The caveat is you still have to pay for admission to get in. However, on Tuesdays admission is just $2! Also, there are discounts on the admission price for military members, AAA cardholders, and IndyStar subscribers. Check out the list of promotional days here.

Each free activity is listed with its location and time. It may be a good idea to look up the location of the buildings in advance on this map so you’re able to maximize your time at the fair.

  1. Challenge your friends to a game of putt-putt golf
  • Corteva Agriscience FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 8AM – 9PM
  1. See if your kiddos can reel in the catch of the day at the DNR Fishing Pond
  • DNR Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 12PM, 4PM – 7PM
  1. Take a ride on the Indiana State Fairgrounds Architectural Trolley Tour
  • DNR Building
  • Dates/times vary
  1. Decide on your favorite hot air balloon and cheer it on at the Giant Hot Air Balloon Race
  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/3 – 7:30AM
  1. Watch the Indiana State Fair Parade
  • Main Street
  • Daily at 6:30PM-7PM
  • Parade at 1:00PM on Tuesdays and Saturdays
  1. Discover unique talents during 4-H Performing Arts
  • 4-H Exhibit Hall
  • 8/3 & 8/4 – 6PM
  1. Visit beautiful butterflies at the Butterfly Exhibit
  • DNR Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Meet and pet baby goats
  • Goat Mountain
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Visit Pioneer Village and be transported back into the 1800s!
  • Pioneer Village
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. 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
  1. Meet your favorite Superheroes at Super City!
  • Corteva Agriscience Harvest Pavilion
  • Daily, meet and greets daily 12PM, 2PM, 4PM, and 6PM
  1. Celebrate and honor our own Hoosier cultural heroes at the fair!
  • Around the Grounds
  • Daily, 9AM-9PM
  1. Take a self-guided trail around the fairgrounds by picking up maps for The Wonder Trail at Animal Town or any state fair information booth
  • Around the Grounds
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Relax and enjoy movies and games with friends at the Super Cinema
  • Grounds by gate 12
  • Daily, 9AM-9PM
  1. Let your youngsters take on the role of a farmer for the day by taking part in Little Hands on the Farm presented
  • Renewal by Andersen Family Fun Park
  • Daily, 9AM – 8PM
  1. Observe all the excitement of an auction at the 35th Annual Old Time Farm Auction
  • CountryMark Opry House Stage
  • 8/17 – 9AM
  1. 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 Renewal by Andersen Family Fun Park
  • Daily, 9AM – 7PM
  1. Meet the Indiana State Fair Queen, Halle Shoults, at Introduction to Royalty: Our Indiana County Fair Queens!
  • Indiana Arts Building
  • 8/11 – 4:30PM
  1. Marvel at the giant cheese sculpture sculpted by Sarah Kaufmann “The Cheese Lady” 
  • Purdue Extension Ag/Hort Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Stop by Hunter’s Honey Farm
  • Purdue Extension Ag/Hort Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Check out the scenic covered bridge, a popular feature of southern Indiana and on the state’s license plate
  • Near the Midway at the west end of the Fair
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. See beautiful works of art created by local artists
  • Indiana Arts Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Buzz over to the beehive demonstration!
  • Animal Town presented by Indiana Farm Bureau
  • 8/17- 4PM
  1. Have a fear of spiders? Conquer it and learn about nature’s nasties up close
  • DNR Building
  • 8/6 – 11AM
  1. Learn about what it’s like to be a farmer by attending a Featured Farmer Chat
  • Glass Barn pres. by Indiana Soybean Farmers
  • Daily at 2:30PM
  1. Watch woodworkers make chairs, toys, and more in Pioneer Village
  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary
  1. Get involved in STEM & FFA interactive activities
  • Corteva Agriscience FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Play corn hole or do a scavenger hunt to win a prize
  • Farm Bureau Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 7PM
  1. Visit baby calves in the West Pavilion
  • West Pavilion
  • Daily
  1. Listen to great music at the Random Acts of Kindness performances
  • Indiana Arts Building
  • 8/7, 8/8, 8/9, 8/12, 8/13, 8/15- 4PM
  1. Witness vintage farm machinery in action
  • Pioneer Village
  • Daily, times vary
  1. Join us for the kick-off to the 2019 Fair at the Opening Ceremonies
  • Big Top Circus Tent
  • 8/2 – 8:30AM
  1. Visit the Purdue Extension-Marion County Demonstration Garden
  • DNR Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Listen to Sounds of the Andes with Inkapirka
  • Indiana Arts Building
  • Daily, 11AM – 10PM
  1. Let your children design their very own quilt square
  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary
  1. Marvel at the K9 Crew Trick Dog Show
  • Renewal by Andersen Family Fun Park
  • Daily, 11AM, 1:30PM, 4PM, and 6PM
  1. Swing by the iCreate Exhibit!
  • Glass Barn presented by Indiana Soybean Farmers
  • Daily, 9AM-9PM
  1. If you’re feeling brave, take a look at a Snakes Alive Talk. Interpretive naturalists from across Indiana will talk about snakes Hoosiers might find in their backyards.
  • DNR Building
  • Daily, 10AM
  1. Churn butter!
  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary
  1. Find out the difference between a llama and an alpaca at the 4-H Llama and Alpaca Show
  • Champions Pavilion
  • 8/2, 8/3 – 8:30AM, 8/4-8AM
  1. Calling all future veterinarians – watch a live veterinary surgery
  • Purdue Vet Medicine
  • Dates/times vary
  1. Experience the Take Flight Raptor Show with Naturalist Mark Booth
  • DNR Building
  • Dates/times vary
  1. Create beautiful flowers out of paper
  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary
  1. Watch Light Up the Night, featuring the Illuminated Tractor Parade & Hot Air Balloon Night Glow
  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/3 – 9PM
  1. Watch and learn from the best at the Youth Talent Contest
  • Farm Bureau Building
  • Dates/times vary
  1. Live dangerously and enjoy the Taste of the Wild Cookout. Visitors can try free samples of steelhead trout, venison, barbecued beaver, Asian carp, frog legs, and more, prepared and provided by DNR staff and volunteer groups.
  • DNR Building
  • 8/4 – 11AM
  1. Listen to special music at the piano
  • Pioneer Village
  • 8/11 & 8/12 – 11:30AM
  1. Sign up to win free popcorn for a year!
  • Farm Bureau Building
  • Daily, 9AM – 7PM
  1. Visit the Indiana State Department of Agriculture Exhibit to learn more about agriculture in Indiana 
  • Normandy Barn
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Get crafty and make a prairie doll
  • Pioneer Village
  • 8/6 & 8/13 – 4:30PM
  1. See what Indiana Birds of Prey are all about
  • DNR Building
  • 8/10 & 8/17 – 4:30PM
  1. Be present at one of the fair’s greatest traditions – the Indiana State Fair Tractor Pull
  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/12 – 2PM & 6PM
  1. Attend the Baton Twirling Contest
  • Farm Bureau Building
  • 8/11 – 2PM
  1. Try your hand at making a bead necklace with Johnny Appleseed
  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary
  1. Cheer on your favorite horse & jockey at Grand Circuit Harness Racing featuring the Fox Stake
  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/6 – 6PM
  1. Feel patriotic at the Pioneer Village Flag Raising Ceremony
  • Pioneer Village
  • Daily, 9AM
  1. Stop by the recharge stations and charge devices for free at any location around the Indiana State Fair!
  • Around the Grounds
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Fulfill your cravings at Taste from Indiana Farms
  • Farm Bureau Building
  • 8/14, 8/15, 8/16, 11AM
  1. Be a journalist for a day as an ISF Contributor
  • Corteva Agriscience Harvest Pavilion
  1. Love dogs? Come see the dog show!
  • West Pavilion
  • 8/17 & 8/18, Times Vary
  1. Relax and unwind with hands-on activities at the WGU Parklet
  • West end/side lot of Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Browse the merchandise and apparel at the new Indiana State Fair gift shop locations
  • South – in front of the Indiana Farmers Coliseum
  • North – in front of the Corteva Agriscience FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. View live nature shows at the DNR Amphitheater
  • DNR Building
  • Dates/times vary
  1. Take a stroll through the Hoosier Lottery Expo Hall and browse the various vendor booths
  • Hoosier Lottery Expo Hall
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Learn about chainsaw troubleshooting and sharpening
  • Pioneer Villages
  • 8/7 & 8/14 – 1:30PM
  1. Hand piece a quilt square in the sewing corner of Pioneer Village
  • Pioneer Village
  • 8/7, 8/11, 8/15, 10AM
  1. 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
  1. View historical artifacts and exhibits, along with old-time ice cream treats and an antique pharmacy
  • Hook’s Museum & Soda Fountain
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Watch a Habitat for Humanity build 
  • Habitat for Humanity AG Home Build, north of Corteva Agriscience FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 7PM
  1. See how far you can spit seeds at the Watermelon Seed Spitting Contest!
  • Purdue Extension Ag/Hort Building
  • Daily, 1PM
  1. 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
  1. 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
  1. View a variety of dancers and try to dance along
  • Dance Stage
  • Daily, times vary
  1. Explore Hoosier Lottery Town underneath the Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Make your way on down to the Indiana State Fair Championship Rodeo
  • Hoosier Lottery Grandstand
  • 8/14 – 1PM
  1. Admire cool cars during the Indiana State Fair Open Car Show
  • Main Street
  • 8/18, 9AM – 4PM
  1. Listen to a recording of Holocaust survivor Eva Kor
  • Indiana Arts Building
  • 8/11 – 3PM
  1. 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
  1. Work and view an old thrasher farm machine and much more in Machinery Field
  • Pioneer Village
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Seek greater heights at the Over the Top Pole Vaulting Meet
  • State Fair Blvd
  • 8/3, 8AM – 8PM
  1. It would be baaad if you missed the 4-H Market Lamb Show
  • Elements Financial Blue Ribbon Pavilion
  • 8/2 – 8AM
  1. Devour free popcorn
  • Farm Bureau Building
  • Daily, 12PM – 5PM
  1. Step back in time and browse the Country Market to get your shopping in!
  • Corteva Agriscience FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. See international circus superstar Bello Nock at Big Top Circus
  • Big Top Circus Tent presented by BEE Window
  • Daily, 1PM, 4PM & 7PM
  • No 1PM performance on Thursdays
  • New $5 fast pass for reserved seating available
  1. Not sure what ewes are? Find out at the Breeding Ewe Showmanship
  • Elements Financial Blue Ribbon Pavilion
  • 8/8 – 8AM
  1. 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
  1. Follow the recipe trail 
  • Maps available at Animal Town presented by Indiana Farm Bureau and the State Fair Information Booths presented by Prairie Farms
  1. Take a picture at night of the giant ferris wheel adorned in 10,000 lights
  • Midway presented by 811
  • Daily, 11AM – 10PM
  1. Remember 5,000 fallen heroes at the 31 Tribute Towers
  • Renewal by Andersen Family Fun Park
  • 9AM-9PM, 8/2-8/11
  1. See a unique, international food charity competition display – Canstruction!
  • Corteva Agriscience Harvest Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Immerse yourself in Youth Interactive Stations
  • 4-H Exhibit Hall
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Attend the Liar’s Contest presented Storytelling Arts of Indiana
  • Pioneer Village
  • 8/2 – 7PM
  1. Hear a variety of entertainment and music acts on the BetIndiana Free Stage
  • BetIndiana Free Stage
  • Daily, times vary
  1. Meet and interact with your favorite superheroes throughout the fair!
  • Around the grounds
  • Daily, times vary
  1. See true baking talent at the King Arthur Flour: Creative Cookie Contest
  • Indiana Arts Building
  • 8/9- 3PM
  1. See all of your favorite animals at the petting zoo
  • Corteva Agriscience FFA Pavilion
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Watch ice cream being made at the Ice Cream Crank-Off!
  • Purdue Extension Ag/Hort Building
  • 8/11 – 11AM
  1. 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 811
  • Daily, 9AM – 9PM
  1. Do you like country music and dancing? You’ll fit right in at Country Dancing For All!
  • Pioneer Village
  • Dates/times vary
  1.  Watch our own Hoosier celebrities compete in the Celebrity Grape Stomp!
  • Indiana State fair Wine Garden presented by Indiana Grown
  • 8/2- 5PM
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