The Durham Agricultural Fair Is Coming & It’s Way More Than Just Livestock!

The 97th Annual Durham Fair begins Thursday, September 22 and according to the website, it’s going to be epic! The tradition began in 1916 when the Fair was little more than a livestock show and has grown into a Connecticut institution as the years passed.

This year, visitors can expect live music from 80’s band Foreigner, Martha Reeves & The Vendellas, and popular country band, Old Dominion. Several smaller music acts are scheduled to appear on the Fair’s two other main stages, including local youth theater groups. Saturday at 1 PM, the Durham Fair’s 13th Annual Talent Show takes center stage – a big fan favorite.

If music isn’t your thing, the list of slated events also includes a Demolition Derby, SUV-Pull and Tractor-Pull for fans of motor sports. The agricultural aspect of the Fair will be highlighted by Horse, Oxen and Pony Pulls, and animal lovers will continue to rejoice when the Marvelous Mutts perform their incredible feats and tricks for the crowd.

The Midway area will feature all your favorite rides, games and Fair-style treats. Enjoy a nostalgic spin on the Carousel or a death-defying trip on the roller coaster. Next, try your luck at one of dozens of games. Maybe you can win a gigantic stuffed Pikachu! No trip to the Fair would be complete without a few sugar, fat and salt drenched goodies from one of several food stands.

The Durham Fair has plenty to do for the whole family – especially the kids! The Kids Place is an entire mini fairground designed with the little ones in mind. Rides, exhibits, and mini Tractor-Pulls ensure kids of all ages will have a blast. Adventurous children can enter the Balloon Stomp contest, the Pie Eating Contest or the Three-Legged Race. Finally, catch one of several shows designed for the young at heart including magic, music and critters.

Parents and wine enthusiasts – don’t miss the Connecticut Wine Festival on the main stage from 1 PM – 9 PM Thursday, Friday and Saturday. There is an additional fee to participate in the wine tastings. Local Connecticut vineyards that will be featured include:

  • Bishop’s Orchards Winery
  • Hopkins Vineyard
  • Jonathan Edwards Winery
  • Jones Winery
  • Paradise Hills Vineyard
  • Sunset Meadow Vineyards


Yearning for the classic spirit of the Fair? Several areas of the grounds will be devoted to farming and agriculture. There’s the Farm Museum with antique equipment and collectibles; Horticultural exhibits including prize winning fruit, vegetable, and flower displays; Classic Crafts such as canning, baking, needlework, and photography; and, of course, three large Livestock barns with Beef cattle, dairy cattle, goats, llamas, poultry, rabbits, sheep and swine.

No matter your age or preference, the Durham Fair has something for everyone to enjoy! Don’t miss this Connecticut tradition!

Back to blog