With seemingly everything getting the plug pulled on it last year, it's nice to see that the Illinois State Fair is back for 2021, although there will be some changes to the routine fair experience.

Don't worry, the annual "Butter Cow" will still be available for selfie-takers. The changes to this year's Illinois State Fair, as you might have already figured out, have to do with the ongoing fight against COVID-19.

The Illinois State Fair Begins Today

If you've been looking for something to do this weekend (or next), maybe a road-trip down to Springfield in Sangamon County would be just the thing. The Illinois State Fair opens today and runs through Sunday, August 22nd. The fairgrounds will be open from 7am through midnight during the entirety of the State Fair.

The price-point for entry is still pretty reasonable, with kids 12 and under getting in free, adults between the ages of 13-59 are 5 dollars on weekdays, and ten dollars on Fridays and Saturdays, and senior citizens (aged 60-plus) are $3.

The Illinois State Fair Does Have Masking And Testing Requirements

The Illinois State Fairgrounds are located in Sangamon County which is currently experiencing high transmission rates of the virus, so the Illinois State Fair, in consultation with the Illinois Department of Public Health, has put the following rules and requirements in place for the duration of the festivities:

  • All fair attendees, regardless of vaccination status, will be required to wear masks in public indoor settings
  • All Grandstand concert goers must wear masks to all performances. Ticketholders in the grandstand track area (also known as Standing Room Only) will be required to provide a print or digital copy of personal Vaccine Card, Vaccine Record, or Negative COVID-19 test within the 72 hours preceding the concert
  • Masks will be provided at the grandstand upon entrance as well as in other locations throughout the fairgrounds and must be worn over the nose and mouth indoors and for the duration of all grandstand performances.
  • Masks are required for all (including vaccinated individuals) in public indoor settings on the fairgrounds, including: Coliseum, Expo Building, Illinois Building, Dairy Building, Livestock Center, Artisans Building, Emmerson Building, Orr Building, Hobbies, Arts & Crafts and the Floriculture/Emmerson Annex.

More information on the Illinois State Fair can be found here.

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