There was a large array of rides and a diverse selection of dining options, too. We picked up a map at the Information Booth that provided the layout of rides, fine art exhibits, agriculture displays, crafts, baking goods, farm animals, and more!
I always love carousels, and we have seen many antique ones in our travels. John's favorite ride when he was young were Kiddie Boats and one of mine was the Ferris Wheel.
Fine art, student art, and flower exhibits were in the Cantey Building. There were 1,259 professional and amateur pieces by South Carolina artists on display that we enjoyed seeing. Here are just a few. The sea turtle piece was the high school, best in show, and was awesome!
The Old Rose Show was started in 1950 by the Palmetto Garden Club. It is the longest continuously held show of its kind in the US.
And seeing an orchid display like this always takes my breath away (and reminds of the Orchid Room at Longwood Gardens near our home in PA).
Next was a quick tour of Cow Town and Chickens in the Tractor Supply Barn.
A wide array of Home and Craft exhibits were in the Moore Building.
There were huge pumpkins, gourds, watermelons, etc., and other vegetables in the fair competition.
These "harvest tables" were amazing.
The Rocket at the SC State Fair is an icon that was first erected in 1969. It is a medium range (nuclear) ballistic missile (disarmed, of course) that was donated to the city of Columbia by the US Air Force. A new base was built and the rocket placed upon it using cranes in August, 2015. Those that attended the fair in previous years remember the Rocket as the "place to meet your mom," as it has always been a meeting place for fair attendees. We shared a huge turkey leg for lunch in the Food Tent, while enjoying the performance of this great musician.
As we made our way toward the exit, we stopped to catch a portion of a dog show. They were all adorable but this one knew lots of tricks!
The Fair Grounds are right next to the Williams-Brice Stadium of the University of South Carolina Gamecocks. (John, as a serious University of North Carolina Tarheels fan, calls them "the enemy.") The stadium is very impressive, nonetheless.