Tanana Valley State Fair Article

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TANANA VALLEY STATE FAIR Latitude and Longitude:

64°51′52.23″N 147°45′42.43″W / 64.8645083°N 147.7617861°W / 64.8645083; -147.7617861

Tanana Valley State Fair
Genre State fair
Dates9-10 days in early August
Location(s) Fairbanks, Alaska
Years active1924 - present [1]
Attendance92,500 in 2014 [2]
Website Tanana Valley State Fair

The Tanana Valley State Fair is an annual state fair held in College, Alaska, United States. The event commences on the first Friday in August, and is a major annual event in Interior Alaska. The fair is held on a hundred-acre plot of land just outside the city limits of Fairbanks, in the approximate center of College Road. The fairgrounds, along with portions of the Creamer's Field Migratory Waterfowl Refuge and surrounding businesses on the north side of College Road, comprise the eastern reaches of the College census-designated place adjacent to Fairbanks.

It features amusement rides, food concessions, competitive exhibits, contests and live performances. As of the 81st Annual Fair in 2012, an adult day pass cost $10 and season pass cost $35. [3] [4]


The Tanana Valley Fair was founded in 1924, making it the oldest state fair in Alaska. Experimental agronomist George William Gasser [5] and local real estate businessman and homesteading farmer Harry Markley Badger were instrumental in forming the not-for-profit Tanana Valley Fair Association. From 1924 to 1951, the fair was held in various locations in downtown Fairbanks. All fairs since 1952 have been held at the current location, on land which the association originally leased from the University of Alaska. [6]

In 1936, the Matanuska Valley Fair formed in Palmer. It saw a name change in 1959 to the " Alaska State Fair" when Alaska was upgraded from a territory to a state in the United States of America. That same year, both fairs requested to be the "Official Alaska State Fair." Subsequently, the governor of Alaska determined the fairs would alternate the title with the Tanana Valley State Fair in Fairbanks using the title in even-numbered years and the Alaska State Fair in Palmer using the title in odd-numbered years. [7] [8] "Tanana Valley State Fair" was adopted as the permanent name of the fair in Fairbanks in 1985. The Alaska State Fair in Palmer is held annually for about two weeks around the beginning of August.

The Southeast Alaska Fair is held in Haines for four days over the last weekend in July. There are also fairs in Ninilchik and Kodiak in late August and early September, with smaller fairs held in Delta Junction, Kenny Lake and Salcha. [9]

Farmer's Market

The associated Tanana Valley Farmer’s Market was founded in 1978 as a means for fair exhibitors to sell their produce and goods. It is currently open from May to September three days a week. [10] The market was formerly located on the fairgrounds property, very near to the intersection of College Road and Aurora Drive and the main entrance to the fairgrounds. The market, including the building housing it, was moved to a site approximately a half-mile (800 m) to the west in 2005.

See also


  1. ^ http://www.tananavalleystatefair.com/about-us/fair-history/
  2. ^ http://www.newsminer.com/news/local_news/tanana-valley-state-fair-attendance-down-again-this-summer/article_8663b036-3339-11e4-934a-0017a43b2370.html
  3. ^ "It's all pun and games at Tanana Valley State Fair" Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, Reba Lean, May 4, 2012 Retrieved on 25 July 2012
  4. ^ "Eclectic Fairbanks" Anchorage Daily News, Katie Kelley Retrieved on 25 July 2012
  5. ^ "George W. Gasser" LitSite Alaska Retrieved on 24 July 2012
  6. ^ Tanana Valley State Fair History Retrieved on 24 July 2012
  7. ^ Alaska State Fair History Retrieved on 24 July 2012
  8. ^ "Looking back in Fairbanks — July 24" Fairbanks Daily News-Miner Retrieved on 25 July 2012
  9. ^ Alaska's State Fairs Retrieved on 25 July 2012
  10. ^ Tanana Valley Farmer’s Market Retrieved on 25 July 2012

External links