The Los Angeles County Fair Gets a Springtime Start

Don Simkovich

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Favorite rides are back when the LA County Fair opens May 5.Fairplex.com

Look for pigs in the red barn, colorful flower displays along with rides, turkey legs and lots to drink. The Los Angeles County Fair is 100 years old and is reopening on May 5 after a two-year absence due to the COVID-19 shutdown.

Wait?

The LA County Fair in May but not September?

That’s right.

The theme is Back to Our Roots and the fair runs from May 5 – 30 from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m every Thursday-Sunday and Memorial Day.

Why the change of seasons?

The move to spring was discussed before COVID ever struck because early to mid-September is one of the hottest times of the year.

“The heat was uncomfortable for our guests and our vendors,” says spokesperson Renee Hernandez. “We had started looking to make the change a couple of years ago. Our last fair was in 2019 so we decided to make the move without creating a hardship on anybody and get a fresh start.”

Fair officials worked with partners in advance to ensure a smooth transition.

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The same Fair fun, but this year in the SpringDon Simkovich

Hernandez says they’re not projecting what attendance might be, but three holidays and observances occur in May: Cinco de Mayo, Mother’s Day and Memorial Day weekend. She says people are out and about on holidays looking for something to do.

May vs September Temperatures

During the fair’s opening week in 2019, the weather was scorching hot.

Temperatures in September routinely hit the mid-90s and often jump higher. Heat radiating off the buildings and pavement can make it seem even hotter.

May’s typical temperatures skirt 80 degrees with extreme maximum highs reaching the mid-90s while September’s normal high temperatures routinely shoot above 90 degrees and maximum temperatures reach into triple digits, according to the National Weather Service.

Year-round harvest

County fairs originally celebrated harvest time, like in 1922 when agriculture was huge in Los Angeles County. But with today’s grow houses and winter crops new traditions are possible.

“Harvest festivals can be year-round,” says Hernandez. “We have our own private farm on-site and we harvest crops throughout the year.”

Unique Fair attractions

The flower pavilion will have 10 different displays commemorating each decade and the centerpiece will be an homage to the area’s citrus industry with the creative use of oranges and limes.

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Plenty of animals will be on handDon Simkovich

Over 200 animals will be ready for viewing along with a petting zoo and the concert series continues with 13 nights of entertainment. The Beach Boys, returning attraction War, rockers ZZ Top, and country favorite Lady A will be on hand.

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From late mornings to late nights Thursday - SundayFairplex.com

Buy Tickets Online

Parking and admission are cashless so buy tickets online ahead of time. A four-pack of tickets that are available for any day is $175 while a four-pack that’s designated is $ 75.

See the website for senior and children’s prices.

The address is 1101 West McKinley Avenue, Pomona.

Visit the LA County website for a complete schedule of competitions, concerts, and places to stay, including RV accommodations.

Jobs at the Fair

Parking attendants are still needed during May, says Hernandez. Job seekers can visit the Join Our Team page and connect with all job listings.

The LA County Fair is one of many attractions taking place during the year at the Fairplex in Pomona.

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I interview entrepreneurs, and dig into the news around Southern California, giving a voice to business owners, artists and more. I also co-write the thriller novel series Tom Stone Detective Stories.

Pasadena, CA
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