Summer nights in Rapid City are the sweetest during the Central States Fair. Neon lights illuminate the sky, the air is filled with the smell of funnel cakes and you can hear the sounds of laughter everywhere. Growing up this was always my favorite time of summer, even though it meant the start of school was right around the corner. I would beg my parents for a mega pass so I could ride everything the fair offered and get tickets to attend the nightly events hosted in the Grandstands. If you love thrilling rides, live music, action packed rodeos and funnel cake, I couldn’t think of a better time to visit Rapid City.

Ferris Wheel

Say hello to rides galore. Ferris wheels, the yo-yo swing, tilt-a-whirls and so many other classic favorites all ready for the next thrill seeking individual. With a variety of rides to choose from everyone can have a good time! Fun can also be found among the game booths and food vendors. My personal favorites are the fried Oreo’s or fried snickers, if you haven’t had either you’re missing out. Of course, you also can’t go wrong with a funnel cake and a frozen lemonade. Visitors to the Central States Fair are offered a variety of entertainment with just the admission price. Check out one of the free shows, dance competitions, explore Kids Town or even petting animals at the Barnyard Animal Nursery.  See the list of things you can enjoy with just the admission price on the Central States Fair website!

If you’re a concert lover and live music fanatic you’ve found your place. The first concert I ever went to was actually at the Central States Fair. They brought the band Styx to town, and as a lover of classic rock it was a dream come true. Each year they bring it bigger and bigger performers to wow the crowd and rock the night away. The 2019 concert line-up showcases singers like Big & Rich with Tris Munsick, Chris Janson with Clare Dunn, and Chase Rice with Parmalee.


Demolition Derby

Concerts aren’t the only events that take place in the Grandstands during the Central States Fair. True rodeo talent is on epic display multiple times and for multiple nights. Watch the Mutton Bustin’s championships, barrel racing and so much more. For the first time this year Rapid City will be hosting the PRCA Xtreme Broncs Finals, which will be the biggest rodeo event of the summer. Other events hosted in the Grandstands include Supercross Racing and Mountain States Ford Demolition Derby. You can’t go wrong with catching one or all of these outstanding events.


Find your fun at the Central States Fair whether you’re a ride enthusiast, concert lover, rodeo fan or foodie connoisseur. See the full list of events and get more information online on the Central States Fair website! I know I’ll be there.