Miami-Dade County Youth Fair kicks off with food, fun for people of all ages

Fair scheduled for 3 weeks

MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – The Miami-Dade County Youth Fair kicked off Thursday, this time with a new beer haven and wine garden for adults.

The fair is back for its 66th year and is scheduled to be open for 21 days, from March 23 to April 16.

Local 10 News reporter Todd Tongen spoke to a man at the fair Thursday who said he has been coming to the fair on opening day for the past 49 years.

"There is no crowds. The kids like to go on the rides, and they got on them multiple times without any lines," Ted Niarhon said. "The food is all fresh. The oilfield for the corn dogs is fresh, for the elephant ears -- it is fantastic."

While there will be food, rides, exhibits and a petting zoo for the whole family to enjoy, this year the fair also features The Garden, where adults can enjoy a cheese and wine tasting.

The fair features nearly 100 rides, including the new Charlie Chopper, Bulletrain Roller Coaster and Vertigo and Rock 'n Cars Bumper Cars.

"You have to have something different every year. We have four new rides," fair director Bob Hohenstein said. "Our concessioners have brought 12 new foods to the fair this year."

Some of the new food items that will be sold this year include cheesy fried enchilada funnel cakes and spring rolls stuffed with banana and Nutella.

Fair organizers expanded the agriculture barn and 4H competitions this year. There is also the educational competitions in Arnold Hall, along with a giant sand sculpture that will be finished by the end of the fair.

The fair has been at the Tamiami Park location for 45 years. Florida International University, which owns the land, has told the fair, which leases the space, that they want the land back, but the director said he hasn't heard talk about moving for months.

"We anticipate and fully expect to be here for generations to come," Hohenstein said.

Opening day tickets cost only $6 for general admission and each ticket gets two people in.

Admission at the gate every other day is $14. Guests 5 and younger and adults 65 and up get in free every day.


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