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Savor every delicious bite at this year’s State Fair of Virginia

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Cute Woman eating small donuts at the Funfair

Don’t knock it till you’ve fried it! Visitors wait all year long for the chance to sink their teeth into favorite food items at the State Fair of Virginia. And more often than not, that means something deep fried and delicious.

“Food has historically been one of the top three reasons fairgoers visit the fair, and that’s truer than ever today,” says Marlene Pierson-Jolliffe, VP of operations for Meadow Event Park and the State Fair of Virginia’s executive director. “The incredible variety of food all in one place becomes both a journey and a challenge as fairgoers plan their menus. It’s an incredible part of shared family traditions, and our goal is to keep expanding the options.”

Pierson-Jolliffe names these perennial items as the top five most popular fair foods:

1. Corn dogs

This fair classic starts with skewering a hot dog on a stick, dipping it into a thick corn-based batter and then deep-frying until golden brown. Add mustard or ketchup if desired, and dig in.

Homemade Funnel Cake with Powdered Sugar

2. Funnel cakes 

A decadent yearly treat, funnel cakes — crunchy pieces of deep-fried dough topped with a generous dusting of powdered sugar — are a fair food must-have.

3. Italian sausage

Mamma mia! Nothing smells better than strolling past an open grill loaded with spicy and sweet Italian sausage links, onions and peppers.

Italian Sausage

4. Ice cream and candied apples

These two desserts share honors for fourth place. You can’t go wrong with either, or splurge and try them together for the ultimate indulgence.

5. Deep-fried Oreos

Fair vendors take everyone’s favorite sandwich cookie to the next level by giving it the batter-and-deep-fry treatment.

For non-traditionalists, vendors are also serving up a smorgasbord of new additions as part of this year’s food lineup. Treat your taste buds to something unexpected like Brazilian-style charcoal-grilled steak and chicken served in a pineapple bowl, or perhaps some waffle tacos. A new macaroni and cheese bar stocks over 30 different toppings to customize your order, while frozen cheesecake on a stick and adorable mini donuts make a sweet finale to any meal.

You’ll need something to wash it all down. Fortunately, fair vendors sell a wide variety of beverages including water, soft drinks, tea, beer and wine.

“You may not want to eat much before coming to the fair,” Pierson-Jolliffe suggests. “Sharing items with others in your group is a good way to sample a number of different things.” 

Visitors are welcome to bring tote bags if they’d like to buy food to take home and freeze to enjoy later. Lastly, try to pace yourself. There’s no need to tackle it all in one day — just pick a few items you’re keen to try, savor every bite, and come back another day for more.

“Oh, and don’t forget to wear stretchy pants!” Pierson-Jolliffe laughs.

The 2022 State Fair of Virginia runs Sept. 23 to Oct. 2, 2022 at the Meadow Event Park in Doswell. For tickets and event information, visit statefairva.org.


This content was produced by Brand Ave. Studios. The news and editorial departments had no role in its creation or display. Brand Ave. Studios connects advertisers with a targeted audience through compelling content programs, from concept to production and distribution. For more information contact sales@brandavestudios.com.
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