Fletcher's Original Corny Dogs to give away free corny dogs at the State Fair of Texas

Kristina Rowe - Just Me in Big D

Fletcher's Original Corny Dogs with mustard (of course) at the State Fair of Texascourtesy of Fletcher's Original Corny Dogs

One of the time-honored traditions at the State Fair of Texas is samples of free food at various locations in the park. Goodies can range from samples of smoothies to bags of chips to tastes of dishes created with cookware for sale or by local restaurateurs in the Celebrity Chef Kitchen. But this year, Fletcher's Original Corny Dogs is taking free fair food to a whole new level. In celebration of their 80th anniversary at the fair, Fletcher's will treat the first 80 customers in line at their corny dog stands to a free corny dog every Friday at the fair.

Starting on Opening Day (Sept. 30) and again on Oct. 7, 14 and 21, all seven of the Fletcher's stands at the fair will give the first 80 customers in line one corny dog for free. As popular as these tasty fried treats are, getting to a coveted place in line will take some strategy. And if you've always had a favorite spot to get your corny dog on at your annual visit to the fair, you probably didn't even know there were six more stands.

The colorful Fletcher's Original Corny Dogs stand near the Thrillway at the State Fair of TexasCourtesy of Fletcher's Original Corny Dogs

The most visited corny dog stand at the fair is the one that's literally steps away from the boots of Big Tex, but fairgoers who enter at the front gate can also quickly make their way to the stand on Nimitz Ave. near the Creative Arts Building. The other five Fletcher's stands are on the midway, with a large can't-miss stand near the Thrillway, which is quickly accessible from entrance gates 9 and 10.

Look for other stands near the midway entrances on both ends, near the Texas Star Ferris wheel and a little ways down the cross-section that runs down MLK Jr. Blvd. The midway entrance on this street is the one marked with the familiar Midway sign and it delivers you right to the middle of all the action. Since Fletcher's is so excited about this 80th anniversary celebration, they've provided a map to help your find your way to a free corny dog on your Friday at the fair.

Map of Fletcher's Original Corny Dogs locations at the State Fair of Texascourtesy of Fletcher's Original Corny Dogs

Free corny dogs were part of the company's early marketing strategy when they started selling the fried treats at the fair in 1942 for 15 cents each. Fairgoers were hesitant to try the snack, so brothers Neil and Carl Fletcher (founders of the company) cut the corny dogs in half and offered them as samples. It took some recipe tweaks and few years for corny dogs to start gaining popularity, but after 80 years in business, it all seems worth it. Now Fletcher's often sells more than half a million corny dogs during a 24-day run of the state fair.

The company's longevity and success can be attributed to their attention to that one product (once they got it perfect.) The unique batter recipe, how the batter is mixed and even the water temperature when it's added to the batter are all family secrets that keep the corny dogs tasting as delicious as ever year after year. The Fletcher's family added funnel cakes and lemonade along the way, and a third generation of the family has expanded the company's reach beyond the fair as they move into leadership roles.

A mobile food trailer has been making special events even more special with corny dogs for a few years, and the company recently announced a permanent food truck location at Klyde Warren Park. Corny dog fans who can't make it to Dallas for the State Fair of Texas can also order Fletcher's Corny Dogs on Goldbelly.

Of course many corny dog fans still make Fletcher's their first food stop at the fair year after year, and that game plan is looking even better this year. There could never be a wrong time for free corny dogs, but with this year's "Treats of Texas" theme at the State Fair of Texas, this celebration giveaway feels absolutely right.

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Lifelong North Texas resident Kristina Rowe writes helpful guides to the best food and fun in Dallas, Fort Worth, Plano, Arlington and more cities in the DFW metroplex. New or nostalgic, frugal or frivolous, count on Kristina for insider tips on things to do in Dallas Fort Worth.

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