Family Fun at the Santa Barbara County Fair

By Shannon Gurnee
In California
September 13, 2015

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

This summer, we took our kids to both the Santa Barbara County Fair (located in Santa Maria, California) and the California Mid-State Fair (located in Paso Robles, California). This blog post is going to be all about the Santa Barbara County Fair! While our four older kids went on a camping trip with their grandpa, Frank and I headed to the Santa Barbara County fair with our two youngest boys. They had a blast! When we got there, I pulled out my selfie stick and snapped a few pictures of us before the day started getting busy. It always amazes me how many pictures we need to take before we get everyone (or at least the majority) cooperating for a good photo (ha ha)!

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

We brought a few water bottles with us (really smart decision as it was pretty hot that day) and purchased our tickets at the gate. At the gate, Adult tickets were $10 each, Children (ages 6-11) were $7 each and Children (under 5) were free! You can also buy the tickets beforehand and get better rates or go on Bargain Days (i.e. $1 Tuesdays). Once inside, we headed for the Carnival Ride ticket booth. I highly recommend purchasing wristbands for the kids to use on rides all day. We would have pre-purchased them before the fair, but going to the Santa Barbara County Fair was a last minute idea. With the wristbands, you can go on any of the rides as many times as you want, as long as you meet the height requirements.  

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

The boys headed straight for what I call the “dragon ride” and had a blast. It was so great because they were able to walk off the ride and walk right back on! There were not many people at the fair yet and it was awesome! They went on a LOT of rides that day! Their favorites were the Dragon Swing, the “Spaceship,” the bumper cars and the Fun House. They had at least two different Fun Houses. One was a spooky one (they said it was lame – ha ha!) and one was a Beach theme.  

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

Now, you’ll notice I included a picture of the Zipper Ride (I think that’s what it’s called?). Thankfully, the boys didn’t want to go on that ride. I have traumatic memories of that ride when I was a kid. I remember the guy who operated was missing teeth, had dirty hair and clothes and an evil laugh (I’m not even kidding)! I remember the cage kept flipping over and over again and wouldn’t stop! I was in tears and screaming for it to stop and then it finally stopped. But then the worse thing ever happened. It started going again, but the opposite direction!! Oh my gosh – that was the worse ride ever and I will never go on it again (unless someone bets me a lot of money to do it – ha ha!)!!!  Do you have any rides you were terrified of as a child and won’t go on as an adult?

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

One thing I love about fairs is the food! There are so many different flavors and kinds of food. I would definitely say to look for coupons on deals at the fair beforehand or split dishes with friends and family as the fair food can get pretty dang expensive! The boys enjoyed lemonade with hot dogs and pizza and Frank and I had beer on tap with Grilled Chicken Shish-kabobs. At the end of day, we had to go for a Funnel Cake. It was so good!!!

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

 #FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

After eating, it was time to walk off some of those calories! We headed to the Livestock area and discovered that one of the boys’ friends had won with his goat through 4H. Makes me definitely want to have enough property so we could have our goats or chickens some day!

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

After checking out the livestock, we walked around the Expo Hall. Before we left, the boys discovered these giant inflatable balls on water that they could go in. We said yes and they loved it! On our way out, we saw a cute little replica of the fair – only it had chicks throughout it! We also saw an old woman on a stilt walker. It was so funny!

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

We had a great time at the fair!! It was a lot of fun and I can’t wait to go again next year (this time with discounted tickets and wristbands)!!

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

#FairFun #CentralCoast #FamilyFun #Travel

What is your favorite thing to do at the fair?
Have you been to the Santa Barbara County Fair before?

About Has 1231 Posts

Shannon Gurnee (formerly Shannon Gosney) is the author of The Mommy-Files, a national blog with a loyal following. She has a Bachelor's Degree in Marriage, Family, and Human Development with a Minor in Business Management. Shannon and her husband, Frank, have a large family with 6 awesome kids and love living on the Central Coast near San Luis Obispo, California, as well as traveling around the world. A full-time Social Media and Professional Blogger, Shannon also serves as a National Brand Ambassador for many well-known companies. Her blog focuses on motherhood, family fun activities, traveling, fashion, beauty, technology, wedding ideas and recipes while providing professional opinions on products, performances, restaurants, and a variety of businesses.

26 Responses to “Family Fun at the Santa Barbara County Fair”

  1. Helen Swarts says:

    Wow!!! that looks like so much fun, I’ve never been to Santa Barbra fair, but it really looks awesome!! the boys seemed to have a blast in those big bubbles, I’ve never seen those before. Great post, I’ll have to check out that fair when I’m down in that area.

  2. Catherine says:

    The food, the rides, the hamster balls on water … looks like you guys had an awesome time!

  3. Janet W. says:

    They have some great rides! What a fun way to spend the day together as a family!!

  4. Robin (Masshole Mommy) says:

    I am not the biggest fan of fairs in the world, but my kids love them. They love those huge slides.

  5. Kecia says:

    What a fun day! I love getting to a fair early like you did. Less people means more fun!

  6. That looks like so much fun. We always go to the state fair down here, and it’s always a blast.

  7. That looks like so much fun. We’ve been to several fairs with the kids, and they love them. They love all the sights and lights.

  8. Pam says:

    Looks like a lot of fun for the whole family. We always loved going to fairs!

  9. It looks like you had so much fun. I am not a fan of very high rides or the tilt a whirl – made me sick as a kid and still does as an adult.

  10. Shell says:

    Looks like such a fun time! Fairs are great family fun.

  11. Marcie W. says:

    We love a good county fair, especially all of the food that goes along with it. Would you believe last time we went my mother in law rode the Star Ship?!

  12. Liz Mays says:

    This sounds like such a blast. It looks like the weather was seriously perfect for a day at the fair.

  13. Donna says:

    Fairs are always so much fun. It looks like you all had a wonderful time.

  14. Kristin says:

    We love the county fair, they always are a blast. Thank you for sharing.

  15. Chasing Joy says:

    I’ve never been to a county fair. This looks like so much fun.

  16. I love going to the Country Fair! These are always so many things to do and eat! It looks like you had a great day.

  17. Ora Lee Gurr says:

    I haven’t been to the Santa Barbara County Fair, but have been to others. I really like funnel cake and some of the crazy rides. I’m glad that all of you had such a great time. Thanks for sharing the good times.

  18. Crystal says:

    Oh, funnel cake! I just adore you! It looks like there’s a lot of fun things to do and a lot of great things to eat at the fair.

  19. Kristi says:

    What a fun post to read. Our family LOVES to go to the fair. We have a huge state fair as well as some really good county fairs that we enjoy visiting. My favorite part is the whole day! Food, Fun and events.

  20. Debbie Denny says:

    Wow. I am grinning just looking at your pictures. Looks like such a fun time.

  21. Christie says:

    What a fun family day! I haven’t taken the kids to a fair in awhile, I need to find one for them this fall

  22. Rachelle says:

    Oh I love fair season!! We just went to our local fair last week and had such a good time!

  23. maria s. says:

    I haven’t been to the Santa Barbara County Fair but I know I would love it! I love any kind of carnival or fair. My favorite things are the haunted house and cotton candy!

  24. Joe says:

    I love Santa Barbara County Fair so much! We went there before and had a memorable time! You recall my memories back!

  25. vickie Couturier says:

    looks like tons of fun was had by all

  26. Allyson Becker says:

    The food looks great. And it sounds like you had an incredible time!

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