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Holidaze at the Sonoma County Fair

Sonoma County Fair

This year’s Sonoma County Fair theme is Holidaze! We are celebrating a year’s worth of holidays in one 11-day fair, and you are invited to the party. The fun begins with Easter on August 3rd, and continues through August 12 & 13 when we celebrate the Fall holidays. Exhibitors and fairgoers are invited to join in every day as we make them all holidays to remember!

august 3 - easter

Put on your Easter Bonnet or your Bunny Ears! The afternoon kicks off with an Egg Hunt for the youngest fairgoers (there will be another later in the afternoon), and continues with Bunny Hop contests, egg decorating and a visit from the Easter Bunny. The highlight of the evening is a Sock Hop!, with the Hot Rods Band playing music from the 50’s. This is the first day of racing, and race fans are invited to join the Hat Contest (with a division for Easter Bonnets!).

12:00 - 3:00 pm Easter Egg Coloring - Community Theater

1:30 pm Egg Hunt (ages 10 & under) - Community Theater

2:00 pm Egg Roll - Community Theater

2:15 pm Pancake Race - Community Theater

2:30 pm Bunny Hop Race – Community Theater

4:00 pm Egg Hunt (All Ages) - Community Theater

august 4 - new years & grandparents day

Grandchildren are encouraged to bring their grandparents to the Fair for this double celebration. Winners of the pre-fair writing contest, ‘My Grandparents Are the Best’ will be invited to come and read their essays at the Fair. Throughout the day, New Years Eve parties featuring a countdown and balloon drops will be accompanied by a rendition of ‘Auld Lang Syne’ by bands performing on the Park Stage. Partiers will receive hats and noisemakers to put them in the New Year’s Eve mood! The New Year’s Eve Parade will include Lion & Dragon dancers from the Redwood Empire Chinese Association, and a special New Year’s float from Wat Lao Saysettha of Santa Rosa. After dark, join us for a truly quirky take on a New Year’s Eve Countdown, ending with a ‘Light Stick Light Show’!

4:00 pm New Year’s Balloon Release – Park Stage

5:00 pm Join the Parade! – Meet at Redwood Credit Union Plaza at 4:45 p.m.

5:30 pm New Year’s Balloon Release – Mexican Village

7:15 pm New Year’s Balloon Release – Park Stage

9:30 pm Light Stick Light Show – Linwood Ave. North

august 5 & 6 - winter holidays

Find your holiday hat and wear it to the Fair! There will be a nip in the air as we celebrate Winter with visits from Santa, gingerbread houses, carolers, wreath decorating and even a fruitcake toss. An on-the-spot Holiday Singing Contest, and even a ‘Ho Ho Ho’ contest should put everyone in the holiday spirit. Bands on the Park Stage all weekend have promised that every set will include a special song to go with the theme.

Come Carol at the Fair

And Get In Free!

Do you and your family or friends go caroling for the holidays? If you still remember some of those songs, you can bring your group to the Sonoma County Fair on August 5th or 6th and get in free! We’re celebrating the winter holidays in the summer this year, and we need you to add a little necessary atmosphere.

Here’s how it works: Get your group together and use your cell phone to make a quick video of one song. Send your video to Our team of holiday-loving judges will watch your video and decide if you get an invite to the Fair. If you make the cut (and to be honest, you probably will!!), you’ll be coming to the Fair for free this year! When you get to the Fair, your group will be expected to sing at least two songs – more if you want.

Saturday, August 5

1:30 pm Present Wrap-Up – Kids Area

2:00 pm Tree Decorating – Community Theater

2:00 - 4:00 pm Wreath Decorating - Community Theater

3:00 pm Present Pile-Up – Family Fun Stage

3:30 pm Gingerbread House Decorating – Finley Hall

6:00 pm Fruitcake Toss – South Pasture

Sunday, August 6

2:00 - 4:00 pm Wreath Decorating - Community Theater

2:15 pm On-The-Spot Holiday Singing Contest – Family Fun Stage

3:00 pm Jingle Bells Sing-Along - Kids Area

3:30 pm Tree Decorating – Community Theater

4:15 pm Present Wrap-Up – Barnyard Stage

6:45 pm Ho, Ho, Ho! Contest - Family Fun Stage

august 7 - earth day

The KRUSH Sonoma Clean Power

The feature event for the day is GREEN FEST, an informational showcase of local groups promoting environmental values and companies producing Earth friendly and green-certified products. Throughout the day and around the fairgrounds, there will be a full slate of hands-on activities, entertainment and educational opportunities. Kids and adults are invited to take win prizes by taking part in a Nature Scavenger Hunt, a search for plants around the fairgrounds. All day long, Earth Day events will give fairgoers an opportunity to learn how they can have a positive impact on the environment.

11:00 - 5:00 pm Green Fest – Shade Park

12:00 - 4:00 pm Nature Scavenger Hunt – Around the Grounds

august 8 - veterans day and independence day

First Community Bank

If you don’t have a uniform, wear your red, white & blue! Veterans get in free after showing their Military ID. This offer is good ONLY on 8/8. Entertainment will be provided by “Guard Experience”, a group from the 40th Infantry Division Band from the California Army National Guard and the Air Force Band from Travis Air Force Base. The New Horizons Swing Band, and local Barbershop Quartets will provide their take on ‘red, white & blue’ music. Local singers are invited to take part in an on-the-spot Patriotic Singing Contest. Color guards will take part in the daily Fair parade at 5:00 p.m. After dark, join us for a patriotic singalong and a ‘Light Stick Light Show’!

3:45 pm Name The States! – Park Stage

4:00 pm On-The-Spot Patriotic Singing Contest – Park Stage

5:00 pmJoin the Parade! – Meet at Redwood Credit Union Plaza at 4:45 p.m.

9:30 pm Light Stick Light Show – Linwood Ave. North

august 9 - talk like a pirate day

This is a new holiday, just getting its start in 2002, but wanna-be pirates everywhere have embraced it. You are invited to put on an eye patch, work on your pirate swagger and come ‘talk like a pirate’ at the Fair. Pirate rock band O’Craven will be providing the music, and there will be fun pirate activities all around the grounds! This is the day for pirates to come out and be celebrated…and for the rest of us to try out the lifestyle! Contests will include ‘Look Like A Pirate’, a costume contest for all ages, ‘Pirate Swagger’ and ‘Talk Like A Pirate.’ The ‘Tankard Lift’ contest will be a breeze for those whose idea of the pirate life includes drinking lots of ale!

1:45 pm Pirate Swagger Contest for Kids – Kids Area

2:15 pm Tankard Lift – Park Stage

3:00 pm Talk Like a Pirate – Family Fun Stage

5:45 pm Look Like a Pirate (Costume Contest) - Family Fun Stage

august 10 - st. patrick’s day

Wear something green and come enjoy Celtic music and lots of green beer! The pub crawl is easy, since the beer booths aren’t far apart! Bands for the day include Celtic bands Greenhouse and Culann’s Hounds will put Celtic music fans in the mood for dancing all day and into the evening. Local Irish Step Dancers will lead the way with their classic performances. Young would-be leprechauns can win prizes in the Little Leprechaun Costume Contest. Fairgoers of all ages will enjoy building leprechaun traps, the great Irish Potato Toss, Pancake Races and the Hunt for a Pot of Gold.

12:00 - 3:00 pm LEGO Leprechaun Trap Contest – Finley Hall

1:30 pm Little Leprechaun Costume Contest – Kids Area

2:00 - 4:00 pm Make a Leprechaun Trap - Community Theater

2:15 pm Tankard Lift – Park Stage

3:30 pm Great Irish Potato Toss - Community Theater

7:00 pm Treasure Hunt – South Pasture

august 11 - valentine’s day

Bring your sweetie, and wear your heart on your sleeve for this celebration of love. You and your true love are invited to get married (or renew your vows) on the giant ferris wheel. (Pre-fair sign-ups required. See below.) The deadline is August 4, and there is a limit, so sign up early! In addition to weddings, we’ll be celebrating Valentine’s Day with love songs from The Classic Sisters and some of those old-time ‘he (or she) done me wrong’ songs from Court’n Disaster. Round out the day with some Valentine crafts. Stop in and create a valentine -- we will mail it for you!

2:00 - 4:00 pm Valentine Crafts - Community Theater

3:00 pm Get Married (or Renew Your Vows) on the Giant Ferris Wheel – Main Carnival

Get Married or renew your vows at the fair!

Valentines Day at the Fair on Friday, August 11 at 3:00 PM

Local romantics are invited to be married (or renew their wedding vows) on Butler Amusement’s majestic Giant Wheel. Each wedding couple will be seated in a gondola, offering a view from a height of nearly 100 feet, and will be legally married as they are whisked smoothly over the top and down again. After the ceremony, participants will adjourn to the Blues & Brews Lounge for a reception featuring cake and a champagne toast. Prefair sign up required for all participating couples. Each couple will receive a photograph of the event, complements of the Fair.

Participating couples will ride the Giant Wheel into the sky as the officiant asks the all-important questions and pronounces them legally wed. Each gondola on the Wheel will seat two couples, with one witness each. Couples must arrive at the fairground on or before 2:00 pm Friday, August 11. Each couple wishing to be married in this ceremony must go to the County Clerk’s Office and file for a Marriage Licence sometime before August 4, 2017. A representative from the County Clerk’s Office will bring all licenses for participating couples to the Fair. No couples will be allowed to take part in the wedding ceremony without a license. Already married couples wishing to renew their vows do not need a license, but will be asked to provide proof they are already married to each other.

To participate, fill out the entry form and send it to the fairgrounds. You will be notified within 48 hours if you will be one of the lucky couples taking part in the ceremony. There is no fee, (aside from the expense of a license), but contestants will have to pay to get into the Fair. Your application must be at the fairgrounds no later than August 4. There is a limit to the number of couples who will fit on the Wheel, so get your application form in early!

Marriage/Vow Renewal Application

august 12 & 13 - Halloween & Thanksgiving

Wear your best Halloween costume and come Trick or Treat on the last weekend of the Fair! With Halloween party music on the Park Stage, costume competitions, pumpkin carving demonstrations and lots of Halloween-themed contests, the Fall fun never ends. Bake a pumpkin pie in one of our Easy Bake Ovens, turn a friend into a mummy using toilet paper, and take part in the Great American Pumpkin Toss! Saturday is Thanksgiving, a day to think about your neighbors and bring two or more non-perishable food items to give to the Redwood Empire Food Bank -- and get $4 off Fair admission!
11:00 am – 4:00 pm ONLY

Thanksgiving Food Drive!

1:00 - 4:00 pm Easy Bake Pumpkin Pie Bake-Off - Finley Hall

2:00 - 4:00 pm Mask Making - Community Theater

2:15 pm Family Look-Alike Contest – Barnyard Stage

3:00 - 4:00 pm TRICK OR TREAT! – Around the Grounds

3:45 pm Mummy Wrap – Barnyard Stage

4:15 pm Halloween Costume Contest – Barnyard Stage

6:45 pm Wait for the Great Pumpkin - Park Stage

8:00 - 9:00 pm TRICK OR TREAT! – Around the Grounds

august 13 - Halloween & Dia De Los Muertos & The Zombie Gathering

The Halloween fun continues Auguest 13, with more Trick or Treating, party music and Halloween contests & activities. We’re also celebrating Dia de los Muertos, and you’re invited to join in the procession at 5 p.m. The Fair’s final holiday event is the Gathering of Zombies at 7 pm Zombies of all persuasions are invited to come and mill around the fairgrounds together. Face painting will be available for those who want to join in at the last minute.

1:00 - 4:00 pm Easy Bake Pumpkin Pie Bake-Off - Finley Hall

1:30 pm Mummy Wrap – Kids Area

2:00 - 4:00 pm Mask Making - Community Theater

2:00 pm Great American Pumpkin Toss - Community Theater

3:00 - 4:00 pm TRICK OR TREAT! – Around the Grounds

4:15 pm Halloween Costume Contest – Barnyard Stage

5:45 pm Ugliest Shoe Contest - Family Fun Stage

6:30 pm Scarecrow UN-Building - Barnyard Stage

7:00 pm Zombie Gathering - Redwood Credit Union Plaza

Sonoma County Event Center at the Fairgrounds
1350 Bennett Valley Road - Santa Rosa, CA 95404

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