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New rides, new entertainers and loads of new foods on deck for the N.C. State Fair

Photo by N.C. State Fair

RALEIGH – N.C. State Fair visitors should bring an appetite for fun with four new amusement rides, two new grounds entertainers and over 30 new food items being part of the stellar lineup planned Oct. 12-22 in Raleigh.


New rides range from the elegantly beautiful two-tiered Venetian Carousel to the high voltage thrills of Tesla AC, which is capped off with six brightly lit lightning bolts hovering above two-person cars that attach to spinning and dipping arms.

Techno Jump and the surf-themed Wipeout round out the new ride offerings. On Techno Jump, riders spin in a circle while the arms of the ride rise and fall in different rhythmic sequences – up and down on alternating arms, up and down for all arms, a wave like upward and downward motion where one car follows the lead of the other ones or something different all together. Riders on the Wipeout face outward around the center orb as the ride churns in different directions, rocking and rolling like ocean waves.

Free grounds acts

The Birdman: World Class Bird Shows will perform daily near Gate 7 in the State Fair Conservation Forest behind Heritage Circle. These educational and conservation minded shows seek to highlight the relationship between humans and animals and showcase the natural abilities of the bird stars.

Also new in 2023 is the Melody Farm Follies an animatronic theater show featuring Rocky Broccoli and his veggie friends plus a singing and dancing scarecrow. Catch at daily show in the breezeway between the Agri Supply Expo Center and the Graham Building.

Fair favorites Rock-It the Robot and Dale Jones, the one-handed juggler return to the fairgrounds for daily appearances. Look for Rock-It roaming around Kiddieland and check out Jones’ show at North Dorton Area Patio.

New Food

The State Fair is well known for some pretty creative deep-fried delicacies plus a range of global cuisines offered. Every year, fair vendors try to outdo themselves hoping to connect with fairgoer’s taste buds and this year may top all other years in terms of new foods. Over 30 new foods will be offered running the gamut from sweet to savory and including world-wide flavors from Africa, South America, Hungary, Jamaica, Mexico, the Mediterranean region, Korea and New Orleans.


We’ll keep you in suspense a little longer on the specifics, but several new dishes involve mac and cheese, BBQ pork, egg rolls, dill pickles, waffles, spiciness and bacon (of course).

Revamped Kiddieland Area – Coastal Credit Union Family Fun Zone at Cotton Park

Finally, the Coastal Credit Union Family Fun Zone at Cotton Park has been updated since the 2022 fair. New seating options, lights in the trees and four new food vendors will be in the area that will host Casey’s Clubhouse and daily visits by the fair mascot Casey Cardinal, plus daily fire safety shows for kids.

For more information, visit the State Fair website at www.ncstatefair.org. The 2023 N.C. State Fair will run Oct. 12-22 at the N.C. State Fairgrounds in Raleigh. The fair offers an experience unique to North Carolina and is an unparalleled value with free entertainment, thrilling rides and games, thousands of animals, endless family activities, competitions, vendors and creative deep-fried delights. For more information, visit www.ncstatefair.org or connect on Facebook, X and Instagram at @ncstatefair.org.

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