Summer is my favorite season for many reasons, but my absolute favorite thing to do during the summer is spend an evening at the county fair with my family. It was one of the things I missed most last year due to COVID-19, so we are happy to announce that the fair is back!

There's nothing quite like a fair, and the Hendricks County 4-H Fair always delivers. It's definitely a can't-miss summer event.

The Hendricks County 4-H Fair, which will be held from July 18-24, 2021 at the Hendricks County 4-H Fairgrounds & Conference Complex, has everything you would expect to see at a Midwestern fair -- animals, rides, vendors and delicious food. The week's complete fair schedule can be found here.

But there are also some special experiences that I think you won't want to miss. Here are seven things you should be sure to check out at this year's 4-H Fair:

1. Free Shows4-H fair wolf show

The first thing I always do is scan the fair schedule to look for those unique free shows that you can only find at a county 4-H Fair. This year three shows caught my eye. Most of these shows have multiple occurrences each day. Check the fair schedule for times and locations.

  • Wolves of the World - This unique show is really just one of its kind! The Sandlofer family will present about the history of wolves, how they interact in pacts, and demonstrate their amazing trained wolves! You've never seen anything like this. 
  • Rhinestone Roper - The Rhinestone Roper show is a death-defying interactive Wild West Show that will leave your jaw on the ground as they perform knife-throwing, gun-spinning, bullwhip cracking and trick-roping skills. 
  • Downtown USA - This interactive museum exhibit allows patrons to participate in aspects of agriculture we don't experience much anymore, such as milking cows and making butter and ice cream!

2. State Bank of Lizton Free Stage

Every night of the fair, you can enjoy live music on the State Bank of Lizton free stage.

Come out and enjoy live music from different performers daily including the Zach Day Band, Backroad 39 and Vinnie and the Moochers or enjoy the Hendricks County Got Talent competition.

3. Fleece Performance GrandstandsDemolition derby

The Grandstands host an event every day of the fair. If your family likes action adventure sports, you will want to check out the week-long schedule at the Fleece Performance Grandstands.

Some of the nightly events are free to attend while others charge a fee. Children 5 and under can attend all events for free with a paid adult.

The lineup includes truck and tractor pulls, a rodeo, moto X racing and Night of Destruction, the annual demolition derby!

4. Special Events

A number of special events truly make the Hendricks County 4-H Fair unique.

You need to check the fair schedule for times and locations, but some of the events you should consider include: the Little Mister and Miss Contest, Hendricks County Fair Got Talent Competition, Hendricks County Fair Youth Talent Competition, and the Car Show!

5. AnimalsWe love checking out the animal barns.

One of my kids' favorite activities at the fair involves checking out all of the livestock in the barns. Small animals like rabbits and poultry and strolls through the horse, pig, sheep and cow barns to see all the livestock have become annual rites of passage. 

These 4-Hers work so hard and become so attached to these animals that it is fun to see them interact with them.

If the 4-Her happens to be in the pin or sitting close by, ask them questions. They have always been happy to talk to guests about their passion, and you and your children just might learn something along the way.

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6. Carnival RidesHendricks County 4-H Fair Ferris Wheel

What would the fair be without carnival rides? Well, you don't have to find out at the Hendricks County 4-H Fair as they have an entire section of the complex devoted to top-notch carnival rides.

From little kiddie rides to the type of thrill rides teens would expect, there is something for everyone.

Save some money by visiting on discount nights. Rides open nightly at 5 p.m. 

7. FoodFunnel cake at Hendricks County 4-H Fair

One of the most popular traditions of the Hendricks County 4-H Fair is partaking in fair food! From lemon shake-ups to curly fries and ribeye steak sandwiches to giant corn dogs, you can always find something for everyone.

If you look hard enough, you may even find some options you've never heard of before.

So, are you ready for the fair? Here are all the details:

Hendricks County 4-H Fair

  • When: Sunday, July 18 through Saturday, July 24
  • Where: Hendricks County 4-H Fairgrounds & Conference Complex, 1900 E. Main St., Danville
  • Admission: $5 per person. Pre-sale tickets are $3 per person before July 1 and $4 per person after July 1 and are available at the Hendricks County 4-H Fairgrounds & Conference Complex, North Salem State Banks, Hendricks County Bank & Trust. Kids 9 and under are free. Parking is free.