INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Today is arguably one of the best days at the Indiana State Fair. It’s $2 Tuesday! And it’s just like it sounds—$2 admission, $2 Midway rides, and $2 food options.
Understandably, a big deterrent for many families who want to visit the fair is the price. A family of four may end up spending upwards of $100 once you factor in parking, tickets, food, drinks, and rides.
Thankfully, there are plenty of $2 deals and freebies today. I’m sharing my tips for getting the best bang for your buck.
First, let’s talk about parking. Unfortunately, parking is not $2 today—it’s still 8 bucks. However, it’s free to park at Glendale Mall’s Rural Street lot. From there, you can ride the Indiana State Fair shuttle right to the gates. The shuttle runs every 20 minutes from 10 a.m. to 11:45 p.m. each day of the fair.
You can also avoid paying for parking by riding your bike to the fair. You can use one of the secured bike racks available on the Monon Trail at 38th Street from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Bicyclists must enter through Gate 18 on the Monon Trail.
The $2 deals start at the gate with admission discounted to $2. Normally, general admission is $13 per person, so this is a huge saving! In previous years, fairgoers would need to print off a voucher ahead of time, but that is no longer the case. And as always, kids 5-years-old and younger are free.
If you plan to enjoy the rides at the Midway, I recommend heading their before you start dining on fried foods. The Midway is open from 12 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Tuesdays, and all rides require just one $2 ticket.
Once you’ve had your fill of thrills, it’s time to eat! Unfortunately, not every single food item at the fair is $2, but each of the 140 vendors offers a $2 menu option. The $2 option is typically a scaled-down version of the full price item, but it’s still a great deal. Also, it’s a great way to try a wide variety of foods without getting too stuffed.
The Indiana Dairy Association’s Dairy Bar is one of my favorite places to stop for discounts and deals. In addition to their $2 menu offering, children 12 and younger can get half off a kids meal just by downloading, printing, and coloring this sheet. Turn it in for your discount when you order. The kids meal includes a grilled cheese sandwich (American on white or Colby on wheat), applesauce, milk, and a fun prize! Also, the Dairy Bar offers free milk refills on sippy cups and baby bottles! Just ask the attendant at the counter.
Another great tip: Visit the Glass Barn and ask a volunteer for a $1 coupon that can be used at the Dairy Bar, the Indiana Pork tent, or the Indiana Beef tent.
Obviously, today we’re focusing on the $2 deals, but keep in mind, there are over 100 free activities at the Indiana State Fair every day, like petting baby goats, visiting the butterfly exhibit, and meeting superheroes at Super City. My favorite free activity is filling up on the famous free popcorn at the Indiana Farm Bureau Building.
There’s also a free concert by the Indiana Wind Symphony tonight at 7:30 p.m.
Find a schedule of everything happening today at the fair here.
Follow @KyleeScales on Twitter as she partakes in $2 Tuesday on a $10 budget.