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Clydesdales, Bull Blasts and Beautiful Babies at the County Fair

Check out what your county fair has to offer this year in Maryland.

Whether it’s the thrill rides, the farm animals, the fried Oreos or the Ferris wheel, there’s something for everyone at the county fair.

To find out when the festivities begin at your favorite fair, check out this list:

Carroll County 4H and FFA Fair

700 Agriculture Center, Westminster, MD 21157

July 27 to Aug. 3

Already in the mood for pig races and demolition derbies? You’re in luck! The Carroll County 4H and FFA Fair kicked off July 27 and continues until Aug. 3. New this year will be an appearance by theSuttler Post Farm Clydesdales. See them perform Thursday at 6 p.m. and Friday at 7 p.m. This year’s fair will conclude with aperformance by The Parmalee Band, a Southern country rock band with roots in South Carolina. Hours vary for each day of the fair, so check out the schedule of events for details.

Howard County Fair

2210 Fairgrounds Road, West Friendship, Maryland, 21794

Aug. 3 to Aug. 10

Entering its 68th year, the Howard County Fair is still a youngster compared to Carroll County’s fair (117 years) and Prince George’s (171 years). Still, the fair boasts plenty of events to keep kids and parents happy. Children will love the Shazam Magic Show, which is celebrating 15 years on stage at the fair. Musical performances from rock, country and oldies bands will take place on the Entertainment Stage throughout the fair. On Aug, 5, check out Bull Blast, a professional bull-riding demonstration byChip Ridgely’s Rockin R Western Productions.

The Howard County Fair is open from 8 a.m. - 11 p.m. every day. Tickets for adults and children 10 years old and up are $5. Seniors who are 62 and older only pay $2, while children younger than 10 enjoy free admission.

Montgomery County Agricultural Fair

16 Chestnut Street, Gaithersburg, MD 20877

Aug. 9 - Aug. 17

Montgomery County takes pride in its agricultural history and makes it the star of the fair. At the Montgomery County Agricultural Fair, families can see cows, pigs, goats and even small animals like rabbits in dozens of barns on the fairgrounds. Pigs race on the Hogway Speedway and children can learn how to milk cows at the Milking Parlor. The fair also boasts thrill rides and carnival games just like their neighboring fairs. Try gliding on water in a giant hamster ball or test your endurance on the rotating Ring of Fire.

Sweet treats like lemonade and frozen, chocolate-dipped bananas are for sale. Junk food connoisseurs may want to get their hands on some deep fried Oreos. Looking for a satisfying snack that doesn’t scream “fair food?” The Big Cheese, which serves up grilled cheese sandwiches, will be celebrating its 60th anniversary at the fair this year.

The fair is open from 10 a.m. to midnight and the carnival opens at noon, except on Aug. 9 when the fair and carnival kick off at 3 p.m. Tickets for adults and children 12 years and up are $10, but all children 11 years old and younger get in for free. There are special ticket deals, such as Family Days and Senior Days, during the fair. Check out the schedule of events for details.

Prince George’s County Fair

Prince George’s Equestrian Center and the Show Place Arena

Sept. 5 to Sept. 8

At most county fairs—including Prince George’s—you can enter your crowd-pleasing apple pie, hand-crafted quilt or child’s masterpiece in a contest and come away with a blue ribbon. But how about your baby? That’s right. The Prince George’s County Fair will host a Beautiful Baby Contest Sept. 5 at 6 p.m. There will also be music and dance performances as well as the standard fair attractions.

Hours vary for each day of the fair, so check the schedule onlinefor the best times to stop by. Tickets for adults and children 12 and older are $6. Children ages 6-11 pay $5 and children five and younger get in for free. Active duty military and their families can enjoy free admission Sept. 8 as part of Military Day.

Maryland State Fair

2200 York Road, Lutherville-Timonium, MD 21093

Aug. 23 to Sept. 2

When it comes to bringing out big acts and big agriculture, theMaryland State Fair is king. Concerts featuring big names like Carly Rae Jepsen, Fall Out Boy and Three Days Grace are scheduled as well as bull-riding demonstrations and horse races.

Hours vary for each day of the fair, so check online for details. Tickets for adults and children 12 and older are $8. Senior citizens 62 years and older pay $6 for admission. Children ages 6-11 pay $3 and children five and younger get in for free. Check out special ticket deals through Food Lion and for Labor Day here.

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