11 Fun Things to Expect at the 2022 Oklahoma State Fair

Whether you want to partake in extravagant fries, country music concerts, or gravity-defying thrill rides, the Oklahoma State Fair is back with its fall abundance of familiar favorites and new attractions.

The Oklahoma State Fair, one of the state’s largest annual events, takes place September 15-25 at the OKC Fairgrounds.

Prices for advance outdoor admission are the same as last year: $8 for adults and children 12 and older; $4 for children 6 to 11 years old; and free for children 5 and under. Season passes are $25.

During the fair, outdoor admission is $15 for adults and children 12 and older; $8 for children 6 to 11 years old; and free for children 5 and under. Season passes are $40.

The full show program is available at okstatefair.com. But in honor of the venerable event’s 11-day run, here are 11 shows, treats and attractions to look forward to at this year’s Oklahoma State Fair:

1. Ninja warriors, player pirates and line-dancing seniors debut

Wondering what’s new for 2022? Throughout this year’s State Fair, aspiring “American Ninja Warriors” can compete against family, friends and other visitors in the new Ninja Nation Obstacle Course on Bandshell Lawn.

Plus, stepping on the board is a risk hardened adventurers must take if they want to brave the new Pirate Game Show on the Plaza Stage.

The first Country Western Line Dance competition of the Oklahoma Senior Games on September 24 will see seasoned competitors enter the Modern Living Building, while the inaugural Equine Empowerment Horse Show on September 21 will give riders with disabilities their first opportunity to show their skills in the Performance Arena at the State Fair.

The skaters represent characters from "Mary Poppins" in "Disney On Ice presents Road Trip Adventures," coming to the 2022 Oklahoma State Fair.

2. Disney on Ice takes a “road trip”

A staple of the Oklahoma State Fair for more than three decades, Disney on Ice returns to the State Fair Arena September 15-19 with the promise of “Road Trip Adventures.”

The show will take participants to the sunny island of Motunui with Moana, the lands of African pride with Simba and Nala, and a larger than life carnival with Woody and Forky.

Tickets for “Disney On Ice Presents Road Trip Adventures” start at $20. They include outside admission if purchased before September 14.

Baby pigs race down the track during Pig Races Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019, the opening day of the Oklahoma State Fair at the OKC Fairgrounds in Oklahoma City.

3. Critters feel the need for speed with GASCAR

You’ve heard of NASCAR, but are you ready for GASCAR?

Goats, sheep, chickens, pigs and other critters crave speed in the Great American Speedway Crazy Animal Races cross-species races on Centennial Plaza.

This is where visitors can also cheer on their favorite cookie-seeking oinkers during the Great American Pig Races.

4. Xtreme Bulls & Broncs returns

The Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association’s Xtreme Bulls & Broncs was one of the few marquee events that did not return in 2021 when the fair made its COVID-19 return.

But the annual favorite – which combines professional rodeo action and concerts featuring country music’s top artists – is back for 2022, bringing brawny bulls, feisty broncs, daring cowboys and stars. topped the charts at Jim Norick Arena in the second weekend of the event.

“Honky Tonk Badonkadonk” hitmaker Trace Adkins will perform at 7:30 p.m. on September 23 after bucking stops, while “Buy Me a Boat” singer-songwriter Chris Janson will perform at 7:30 p.m. on September 24.

Tickets are $45 for boxes, $38 for adults and children 12 and older on the upper tier, and $30 for children 2-11 on the upper tier. Places are required for participants 2 years and older.

Tickets purchased before September 14 include exterior entry to the fair.

Tracy Lawrence performs on Day 3 of the Country Thunder Music Festival on April 9, 2022 in Florence, Arizona.

5. Free concerts with Tracy Lawrence, Foghat and Blue Oyster Cult

Country music stars, classic rock bands and an Elvis Presley tribute are featured in the fair’s annual free concert series on the Chickasaw Country Entertainment Stage.

Celebrating her 30th birthday in country music, hitmaker Tracy Lawrence will kick off the nightly shows on September 15. The shows are free with paid entrance outside.

The concerts continue with:

  • Georgian singer, songwriter and rapper Colt Ford on September 16;
  • “Slow Ride” rockers Foghat on September 17;
  • Resurrection — A Journey Tribute on September 18;
  • Christian Country Trio Cain on Sept. 19;
  • “Crimson and Clover” performers Tommy James and the Shondells on Sept. 20;
  • Shawn Klush’s Elvis tribute on September 21;
  • “American Idol” Season 19 alumnus Alex Miller and country band King Calaway on Sept. 22;
  • R&B group Midnight Star on September 23;
  • “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper” rockers Blue Oyster Cult on Sept. 24; and
  • El Paso, Texas, Norteno La Zenda Nortena group on September 25.
Gram's Sweet Treats freeze-dried snacks are new to the Oklahoma State Fair in 2022.

6. Fair trade foods delight the taste buds

What’s the fair without a full menu of mouth-watering treats to tantalise the taste buds? Naturally, visitors can seek out classics like giant turkey legs, burgers, corn dogs and more fried-on-a-stick favorites than you can shake a stick at.

New treats for 2022 range from Hot Cheeto-laden fries and frozen brown sugar sweetened tea to freeze-dried saltwater taffy and coconut shrimp served in a half coconut shell.

Adventurous eaters can seek out unusual dishes like Snake Bite nachos, which are cheese-covered fries and spiced rattlesnake sausage with a special Venom sauce; Bug Pizza, which is topped with delicacies like scorpions, crickets and mealworms; and the WonderStick, which is ice cream served in a special J-shaped cone that is touted as less likely to drip than traditional cones.

7. The long-running Band Day Parade contest continues

The 70th Annual Oklahoma State Fair Band Day Parade Competition will be held Sept. 19 in the Circle.

High school, middle school, and high school bands—along with drum lines, drum majors, mascots, twirlers, and color guard teams—from across the Sooner State will compete for trophies, prizes in cash and bragging rights at this year’s fair.

People walk near the Sky Eye ferris wheel at the 2019 Oklahoma State Fair.

8. The Carnival promises unlimited thrills

Fans of high-flying and high-speed rides will certainly find their happiness at the fair.

Until September 14, thrill seekers can save up to $20 when they pre-purchase unlimited Carnival Armbands.

Armbands are $20 for Monday-Thursday visitors and $30 for Friday-Sunday fairs when purchased in advance.

9. Giant Pumpkin Competition Creates Fall Vibes

Want to supersize the Oklahoma State Fair fall experience?

Check out the gargantuan gourds at the Giant Pumpkin Contest and Weigh-in at noon Sept. 17 in Oklahoma Expo Hall.

Rider Windy Lattin of Davis rides upside down during a race around the arena at the Wild West Showcase at the Centennial Frontier Experience Monday, Sept. 15, 2014, at the Oklahoma State Fair.

10. Oklahoma Frontier Experience revisits the Wild West

Open daily from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., the Oklahoma Frontier Experience transports visitors to the Old West with an interactive array of shows, demonstrations and activities.

Twice a day, the Wild West Showcase will feature fantastic feats of rope trick and horseback riding by the likes of barefoot Roman rider Dusti Crain-Dickerson, who performed with Dolly Parton’s Stampede; versatile cowboy Roper Kiesner, whose skills include whip cracking, gun spinning and horseback shooting; and Oklahoma City charro Gabriel Hernandez, who teams up with his horse El Vallo to show off Mexican cowboy traditions.

11. Livestock shows spotlight goats

It wouldn’t be the fair without the cattle competitions. This year, champions will be selected in a series of contests, from llamas and alpacas to Brahman cattle and silky fainting miniature goats.

Yes, there will be miniature silky fainting goats at this year’s fair.

One of the new attractions planned for the 2022 Oklahoma State Fair, the best of the best silky fainting miniature goats—the GOATS of the Tiny Adorable Goats, if you will—are competing Sept. 20-22 in the Super Barn.

Writer Brandy “BAM” McDonnell has covered Oklahoma’s arts, entertainment and culture sectors for The Oklahoman for 20 years. Contact her at [email protected], www.facebook.com/brandybammcdonnell and twitter.com/BAMOK. Support his work by signing up for his See & Do Oklahoma newsletter and subscribing to The Oklahoman.

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