Over the course of 163 years, it’s likely to believe that many changes have been implemented to the original Ohio State Fair. Although a few things have changed since the first Fair in 1850, some events have stayed the same for years.
- The butter cow: First crafted in 1903 by A.T. Shelton & Company, the butter cow and calf were created for a butter sculpting contest that was hosted by The Ohio State University and the Dairy Processors of Ohio. Today, the butter cow and calf are created every year with a surprise sculpture to accompany it. Some of the former ones include a tribute to the 2016 NBA Champion Cleveland Cavaliers, Darth Vader and Mr. Monopoly. The 2017 sculpture will be unveiled on Tuesday, July 25.
- Smokey Bear: A favorite among children for his ability to address kids by name, Smokey Bear is an icon of the Fair that stands 365 days a year, yet only speaks during the 12-day period. Since 1959, Smokey has been an annual Fair attraction. Smokey was upgraded in 2015 to an animatronic bear to appear more realistic. Although the actual statue may have changed, Smokey’s legacy will continue on for years to come.
- All-Ohio State Fair Band: In 1925, the All-Ohio State Fair Band became an attraction that honors youth performers and amazes audiences. Since its start, the band has had around 200 musicians perform every year. Interested musicians are judged by their ability and instruments demanded for the Band. Be sure to catch one of their multiple performances, always ending with “Stars and Stripes Forever!”
- The All-Ohio State Fair Choir: The All-Ohio State Fair Youth Choir was founded in 1963 for vocalists. Like the Band, the Choir members go through an application process which includes judging their ability, experience and recommendation of their high school choral director. The Choir will have 178 members this year, ranging from 53 counties and 96 high schools throughout the state of Ohio.
- Schmidt’s of German Village: Celebrating their 103rd year as a vendor at the Fair, Schmidt’s will sell their popular cream puffs and Bahama Mama Sausages. Schmidt’s is the oldest continuous restaurant at the Fair, and now holds the record as the oldest continuous restaurant participating at a state fair in the nation.
- The Fifty Year Club: What better way to celebrate the traditions of the Fair than honoring those who have been there for decades? If you visited the Fair before 1967, you are eligible to be a part of the Fifty Year Club. Membership is free for those who choose to attend the club meeting on Monday, July 30. Enjoy reminiscing about the past and enjoy the present by making lasting friendships and celebrating your time at the Ohio State Fair.
- Butters D. Cow: Celebrating his 15th birthday this year, Butters D. Cow, is one of the newer traditions of the Fair. As the Fair’s official mascot, Butters loves to interact with as many fairgoers as possible and is always happy to pose for a picture!
- Attractions: Take a ride on the Giant Slide and the SkyGlide and celebrate their 48 years of fun. The rides, the competitions, the shows- there is so many attractions specific to the Ohio State Fair. Be sure to take in all the Fair has to offer and visit your favorite events. From food, to musicians, to animals and more, the Fair has whatever you’re interested in!