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21 Summer Fairs, Festivals, & Carnivals Your Family Will Love

21 Summer Fairs, Festivals, & Carnivals Your Family Will Love

Don’t miss these state and county fairs, festivals, and carnivals for families in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut.

This summer, we’re all looking for things to do outside of house—and who can blame us after being home for the majority of the past year. With restrictions lifting and things returning to some sense of normal, county fairs, state fairs, carnivals, and festivals are back in full swing this summer. So, whether you’re looking details on strawberry festivals, craft fairs, cultural festivals, food festivals, state fairs, or county fairs, you’ll find the best summer festivals, carnivals, and fairs happening in New York, upstate New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut all summer long. Plus, you can make a family day trip or weekend trip out of it! We can’t wait to ride the rides, play the midway games, and eat classic fair foods.

For even more ideas of things to do this summer with your kids, read and download the Summer Family Fun Guide!

Click on a month below to jump to the fairs, carnivals, and festivals happening then:

Fairs, Festivals, & Carnivals in June

The L.E.A.D. Fest Carnival
June 3-20, Wednesday-Friday, 5-11pm; Saturday-Sunday, 12-11pm
WHERE: Westfield Garden State Plaza, 1 Garden State Plaza, Paramus, NJ
WHAT: Bring the family out to this carnival with spectacular rides, tons of food, games, and more!
WANT TO GO? $30 Megapass until June 3; $40 Megapass starting June 4; individual ride tickets available as well. 

66th Annual Mattituck Lions Strawberry Festival
June 16-20, Wednesday-Thursday, 5-10pm; Friday, 5-11pm; Saturday, 11am-11pm; Sunday, 11am-5pm
WHERE: Fairgrounds, 1175 Route 48, Mattituck
WHAT: At the 66th Annual Strawberry Festival – there’s some much to do. Make a day or evening of it. Whether you choose some farm fresh strawberry delicacies, take a ride on a super roller coaster, shop amongst the arts and crafts or listen to some great music or watch many of the great attractions with the kids.
WANT TO GO? $5-$10; $25-$50 Pay-One-Price Bracelet; Dads enter and ride free on Father’s Day with paid child’s admission. 

Strawberry Festival 2021
Through June 27: daily, 9am-6pm
WHERE: Garden of Eve, 4558 Sound Ave., Riverhead
WHAT: Visit the only certified organic U-pick strawberry field on Long Island! Admission includes unlimited access to U-pick organic Strawberry Field, Family Fun Fields, pedal karts, hay tower, farm animals, spider web, and more.
WANT TO GO? $9.95; free for children younger than 2. Fee does not include cost of berries. 

Newburgh Mall Carnival
June 17-27, Monday-Tuesday and Thursday, 5-10pm; Friday, 5-11pm; Saturday, 12-11pm; Sunday, 12-10pm
WHERE: Newburgh Mall, 1401 Route 300, Newburgh
WHAT: Spend the day at the carnival and take a spin on the new Bertazzon Himalaya and the Jumbos Rides!
WANT TO GO? Admission is free. $1.50 for single tickets, $30 for 20 tickets; $60 for 50 tickets. $35 Unlimited Ride Wristbands for persons 36” and over. 

State Fair Meadowlands
June 18-July 11, Monday-Thursday, 5pm-12am; Friday, 3pm-1am (June 18, 5pm-1am); Saturday, 2pm-1am; Sunday, 2pm-12am (July 4, 2pm-1am)
WHERE: MetLife Stadium, 1 MetLife Stadium Drive, East Rutherford, NJ
WHAT: Spread over 35 acres, the Fair is a fun-packed event. This year’s fair features a robust entertainment lineup, including the Jurassic Kingdom and Pirates of the Colombian Caribbean, Cycle Circus Live, Master Hypnotist Steve Bayner, Magician Jay Mattioli, and Racing Pigs. Don’t forget the spectacular fireworks July 3-4.
WANT TO GO? $34.95; free for children shorter than 36 inches. $15.95 Fast Pass Upgrade available at the fairgrounds. 

FREE 16th Annual NYC Kidsfest
June 19-20, 2-6pm
WHERE: Morningside Avenue, between West 115 and 116 Streets, Morningside Heights, Manhattan
WHAT: This creative initiative brings the performing arts to open street spaces. Headliners include Grammy Award-nominated artist SaulPaul, Fyütch, and Flor Bromley. Plus, kids can enjoy a Kung Fu demo and workshop, Chinese dance and hip-hop workshops, Hour Children Kids Harlem School of the Arts’ Violin Madness Music Presentation, and more!
WANT TO GO? Advanced registration required. 

The Rhinebeck Crafts Festival
June 26-27, Saturday, 10am-6pm; Sunday, 10am-5pm
WHERE: Dutchess County Fairgrounds, 6636 Spring Brook Ave. (Route 9), Rhinebeck
WHAT: This curated event features contemporary fine craft and art from more than 200 American makers. Find original fashions, accessories and jewelry; functional and sculptural works; and fine art. Enjoy gourmet foods and tastings from local distilleries and wineries. Plus, there’s an interactive puppet theater, face painting, stilt walkers, and more for the kids to enjoy.
WANT TO GO? $10; $9 seniors ages 62 and older; $4 ages 6-16; free for children younger than 6. 

Fairs, Festivals, & Carnivals in July

2021 Empire State Fair
July 1-11, Monday-Friday, 5-11pm; Saturday-Sunday, 12-11pm
WHERE: NYCB LIVE, Home of The Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, 1255 Hempstead Turnpike, Uniondale
WHAT: This fair features new acts including the Royal Hanneford Big Top Circus, The Incredible Dock Dogs Show, an educational experience at the Exotic Animal Zoo, and new rides and attractions! Dreamland Amusements will provide a midway featuring rides and attractions never before seen at the Empire State Fair!
WANT TO GO? Admission prices were not available at time of press. $30 unlimited ride wristband for those taller than 36 inches; $1.50 single ticket, $30 for 20 tickets; $60 for 50 tickets. 

Orange County Fair
July 15-Aug. 1, Thursday-Friday, 4-11pm; Saturday-Sunday, 12-11pm
WHERE: Orange County Fair Speedway, 239 Wisner Ave., Middletown
WHAT: Whether you go to see one of the grandstand shows (almost all now have some free seating with fair admission), taste some of the delicious fair food, or take a spin on one of the new rides, you’ll create family memories that will last a lifetime.
WANT TO GO? Admission: $10; $7 seniors ages 65 and older and children ages 7-12; free for children ages 6 and younger. $25 unlimited ride wristband for those taller than 36 inches; $1.50 single ticket, $30 for 20 tickets; $60 for 50 tickets. 

NJ Lottery Festival of Ballooning
July 23-25, Friday, 1-10pm; Saturday, 6am-10pm; Sunday, 6am-8pm
WHERE: Solberg Airport, 39 Thor-Solberg Road, Whitehouse Station, NJ
WHAT: This is the largest summertime hot air balloon and music festival in North America. From twice daily mass ascensions of up to 100 special shape and sport hot air balloons, to concerts, non-stop family entertainment, hundreds of crafters and vendors, great food, fireworks, and more, the festival is jam-packed with stuff to do. Laurie Berkner will perform at 1:30pm on the festival’s opening day.
WANT TO GO? General admission (includes lawn seating for concerts): $26; $10 children ages 4-12; free for children ages 3 and younger. 

Jurassic Quest Drive Thru Summer Tour
July 30-Aug. 8, Wednesday, 1-8pm; Thursday-Friday and Sunday, 9am-8pm; Saturday 9am-9pm
WHERE: Rentschler Field at Pratt & Whitney Stadium, 615 Silver Lane, East Hartford, CT
WHAT: See more than 70 dinosaurs in person! Jurassic Quest’s herd—from the largest predators to playful baby dinos—is displayed in realistic scenes that allow guests to experience them roaring and moving. Make epic family memories including a choose-your-own-audio-adventure tour, a visit with baby dinos and trainers, and a digital souvenir photo.
WANT TO GO? $49; $80 for passenger vehicles seating 9-15 people. Police, military, medical personnel, and first responders save 10 percent (must show valid ID). Tickets must be purchased in advance.

FREE Mercer County 4-H Fair
July 31-Aug. 1, Saturday, 10am-8pm; Sunday, 10am-4pm
WHERE: Howell Living History Farm, 70 Woodens Lane, Lambertville, NJ
WHAT: Visit the Howell Living History Farm for a truly enjoyable day! The fair includes animal shows and exhibits, homemade ice cream, hayrides, pony rides, music, magic shows, and farm tours!
WANT TO GO? Please bring a non-perishable food donation for Rutgers Against Hunger. 

83rd Annual Warren County Farmers’ Fair
July 31-Aug. 7, Monday-Friday, 3-10pm; Saturday-Sunday, 12-10pm
WHERE: Warren County Farmers, 1350 Strykers Road, Phillipsburg, NJ
WHAT: This fair, featuring one of New Jerseys’ popular hot air balloon festivals, is truly a family affair. Balloon launches, balloon rides, and tethered rides. Savor the bounty of Warren County’s agricultural community. See old, antique, and fast cars! Be sure to check out the Kids Rodeo Roundup on Friday. Shows, crafts, educational presenters, daily contests, and clowning around with Merriloons.
WANT TO GO? Admission: $9; $5 ages 6-12; free for ages children 5 and younger. Ride bracelet prices and individual ticket prices were not available at time of press. Tickets for shows will be available for purchase the week of the fair. 

Fairs, Festivals, & Carnivals in August

Middlesex County Fair
Aug. 2-8, Monday-Friday, 5-11pm; Saturday, 11am-11pm; Sunday, 11am-10pm
WHERE: Middlesex County Fairgrounds, 655 Cranbury Road, East Brunswick, NJ
WHAT: Browse a selection of homemade goods made by local vendors. Feel the thrill of adventure as you hop on one of the rides. Indulge in some traditional fair food and entertainment. And explore the rich agricultural heritage of Middlesex County.
WANT TO GO? Admission: $10; $4 seniors ages 65 and older and children ages 3-12; free for children ages 2 and younger. $25 ride bracelet. $45 Mega Bracelet Multi-Day Pass. $1 single tickets; $20 for 24 tickets; $50 for 64 tickets.

61st Annual Lebanon Country Fair
Aug. 6-8, Friday, 5-10pm; Saturday, 8:30am-11pm; Sunday, 9am-6pm
WHERE: Lebanon Fairgrounds, 122 Mack Road, Lebanon, CT
WHAT: The Lebanon Country Fair offers entertainment on the center stage, food, games, and more!
WANT TO GO? Admission: $10-$11; $9 seniors; free for children ages 11 and younger and active, retired or disabled military with ID. 

New Jersey State Fair Sussex County Farm & Horse Show
Aug. 7-14, daily, 10am-10pm; carnival rides open at 12pm
WHERE: Sussex County Fairgrounds, 37 Plains Road, Augusta, NJ
WHAT: Make it a day of carnival rides, live entertainment, animals, carnival treats and more!
WANT TO GO? $14; $10 seniors 60 and older; $6 children ages 6-12. See website for various promotions, pay-one-price, and mega pass options. 

Wolcott Country Fair
Aug. 20-22, Friday, 4-11pm; Saturday, 10am-11pm; Sunday, 10am-9pm
WHERE: Wolcott Country Fairgrounds, 245 Wolcott Road, Wolcott, CT
WHAT: There is so much to do at the Wolcott Country Fair including kiddy rides, thrill rides and games of chance! Enjoy the incredible variety of delicious food and catch some of the many bands playing country, oldies, and pop.
WANT TO GO? Admission: $10; $8 seniors ages 65 and older; free for children ages 10 and younger and current active duty, reserve, and National Guard Service members (must have a valid military CAC ID). $25 carnival ride wristband Saturday-Sunday, 11am-5pm. 

The Great New York State Fair
Aug. 20-Sept. 6, Monday-Thursday, 10am-11pm; Friday-Sunday, 10am-12am; Sept. 6, 10am-9pm (closing time subject to change without notice)
WHERE: New York State Fairgrounds, 581 State Fair Blvd., Syracuse
WHAT: This one-of-a-kind fair will feature New York’s best food and drink, live music and entertainment, rides, and games. Daily concerts include REO Speedwagon, Dropkick Murphys, Foreigner, and the Oak Ridge Boys. Farm animals will be on display to introduce the young and young-at-heart to New York’s agriculture.
WANT TO GO? $3; free for children 12 and younger. Tickets must be purchased online. Midway Ride Ticket prices were not available at time of press.

The 175th Dutchess Fair
Aug. 24-19, daily, 10am-10pm; rides close at 11pm on Saturday
WHERE: Dutchess County Fairgrounds, 6636 Route 9, Rhinebeck
WHAT: The Dutchess Fair is back with fairgoer favorites, including the midway, fun fair food, animals, and free entertainment!
WANT TO GO? Admission prices were not available at time of press. 

2021 4-H & Agricultural Fair
Aug. 25-29, Wednesday-Saturday, 10am-10pm; Sunday, 10am-5pm
WHERE: Hunterdon County Fairgrounds, 1207 Route 179, Lambertville, NJ
WHAT: Enjoy animals, great food, amazing entertainment, rides, and a variety of displays make for great family fun!
WANT TO GO? Admission is free; $17-$25 ride wrist bands. 

Brooklyn Fair 2021
Aug. 26-29, Thursday, 4-11pm; Friday, 10am-11pm; Saturday, 9am-11pm; Sunday, 9am-6pm
WHERE: Brooklyn Fairgrounds, 15 Fairgrounds Road, Brooklyn, CT
WHAT: Catch one of New England’s best agricultural fairs! It’s family-oriented, featuring food, music, agricultural displays, amusement rides, and more!
WANT TO GO? Admission: $10; $8 seniors ages 65 and older and military members with ID; free for children ages 12 and younger. $30 ride bracelets: Thursday, 4-11pm; Friday, 12-5pm; Sunday, 12-6pm. Regular ride tickets must be used all other times. 

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Shara Levine


Shara Levine, originally from Brooklyn, is the Events Manager for NYMetroParents. As a lifelong New Yorker, and mom of four raising her kids on Long Island, Shara knows her hometown well and brings her love of all things fun to NYMetroParents by sharing the best in kid friendly events, festival, concerts, and performances in NYC, Brooklyn, Queens, Long Island, Westchester, and Rockland. When not helping parents plan their family's day out, Shara enjoys making random Seinfeld references and going on late-night Target runs. 

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