State Fair of Texas for Beginners

The State Fair of Texas saw 2.5 million visitors last year and organizers are expecting this year to be no different.

It’s 24 days of fried food, fun, games and the like, but for someone who has never been to the main event, there are a few places you will want to start.

First things first, take a selfie with Big Tex. He’s the 55-foot legend at the State Fair of Texas. Big Tex has been a fixture at the fair since the 1950’s.

Charley Obert, who is celebrating her 40th, consecutive opening day at the fair, recommends making your way to Fletcher’s Corny Dogs next. Gigi Fletcher, owner of the State Fair of Texas staple, rolled out the Cheesy Pup this year.

“It’s just cheese on a stick, but deep fried. Of course, the secret is our magic batter, but if I told you what it was, then it wouldn’t be a secret anymore,” joked Fletcher. “It’s a corn meal batter… that just has some special ingredients.”

After the dinner, there is always dessert. We stopped at the original State Fair of Texas funnel cake spot, Fernie’s Funnel Cakes. They are celebrating their 50th year at the fair. Since everything is bigger in Texas though, they say they offer a funnel cake that’s probably larger than anything anyone has seen.

"We also have a weekend at Fernie’s which is in a pizza box,” said Johnna McKee. “It’s just a huge funnel cake."

Also important to note if you want to save a little cash. The fair is hosting Thrifty Thursday’s every Thursday of the fair. It’s the best day of the week to get discount pricing on items like corny dogs, cotton candy and funnel cakes. Participating food vendors also offer one of their signature menu items, ranging from mini versions to regular-size items.

After the food and the games… there is one place we were repeatedly told to visit… after our food settled of course. The Texas Star! Even if you don’t want to hop aboard the more than 200 foot Ferris wheel, at least you should stop by to get your picture.

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