DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Today is the first day of this year’s State Fair of Texas — the biggest state fair in the country.READ MORE: ERCOT Shuts Down Wholesale Electricity Provider Griddy In Texas
The day kicks off with the Opening Day Parade, celebrating the first day of the fair with a march through downtown Dallas. The parade begins at noon at the corner of Houston and Main Street and ends at Main Street and Good-Latimer.
The 2016 State Fair opens at 10 a.m. and will run for the next 24 days.
The theme of this year’s fair is “Celebrating Texas Agriculture.” Organizers say the yearly event is a “combination of entertainment, art, agriculture, history and cuisine, the Fair provides guests with a unique way to experience every aspect of Texas culture, all in one place.”
This is the 130th anniversary of the State Fair of Texas. The original Dallas State Fair and Exposition was held in 1886, and has grown exponentially since then.
Perhaps not at his current stature, but in one form or another Big Tex has been greeting visitors to the State Fair of Texas for more than 60 years. Initially Texas’ tall man was silent, but was given “a voice” in 1953.
An estimated 3 million visitors are expected to walk through the gates this year, but planning for the fair is a year-round job. Rusty Fitzgerald, the Senior VP of Operations at The Fair, said, “You have to keep a State Fair fresh. We try to find new things every year. We have new rides, new shows.”READ MORE: Texas Lawmakers Call On Public Utility Commission Chair To Resign
The Chevrolet Main Stage offers a variety of music for everyone – hosting dozens of performances during the fairs run. Country music singer/songwriter, and Texas native, Kasey Musgraves will open this year’s stage tonight at 8:30 p.m.
Another staple of the State Fair of Texas Midway is the games! There is something for everyone — even the littlest revelers. All parents need to do is look for the signs that read “All Kids Who Play Win A Prize.”
If you’re looking for a little excitement or want to the The Fair from a different view you can always strap in on one of the midway rides. In addition to a 20-story high Ferris wheel – The Texas Star – there are about 75 other rides fairgoers have to choose from.
Each year Fletcher’s Corny Dogs serves hundreds of thousands of their golden treats. The company started at the State Fair in 1942. But if corny dogs aren’t your thing don’t worry. There are more than 200 other concession stands at the Fair.
There are also huge events for any sports fan, including the Southwest Airlines State Fair Classic between Grambling State and Prairie View A&M Universities and the Red River Rivalry pitting the University of Oklahoma Sooners against the Texas Longhorns.
The State Fair of Texas opens today and runs through October 23.MORE NEWS: Plumber Shortage, Supply Chain Issues Delay North Texas Winter Storm Repairs
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