O.C. Fair returning this summer with capacity limits, other modifications; ticket sales start May 1

Local news

The Orange County Fair is set to resume this summer, with modifications, after being canceled last year for the first time since World War II due to the coronavirus pandemic, organizers announced Thursday.

This year’s fair is themed “Time for Fun” and will be held at the fairgrounds in Costa Mesa from July 16 through August 15, according to a news release from the OC Fair and Event Center.

Fair officials have developed a plan in conjunction with public health agencies to safely allow guests to once again enjoy the carnival rides, food, entertainment, animals and more in person this year. The plans are based on COVID-19 projections for summer, meaning they are subject to change if health conditions deteriorate, organizers emphasized.

Health measures include capacity limits and restrictions on daily attendance, as well as fewer concession stands, rides and shopping vendors to allow for physical distancing. Additionally, tickets must be purchased in advance.

“We have worked through many different scenarios for the 2021 OC Fair and we are so excited to move forward with this plan because it means that we really can bring back the fun,” Michele Richards, CEO of the OC Fair & Event Center, said in the release. “We want everyone to continue to follow health guidelines and get vaccinated so we can finally celebrate summer together again.”

Tickets go on sale May 1 at ocfair.com and will be $12 for general admission, and $7 for children and seniors on Wednesdays and Thursdays, and $14 for general admission, and $7 for children and seniors on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Those are the same prices as the 2019 OC Fair, albeit Friday was moved into the weekend pricing tier to “absorb the online ticket sale fees,” according to the release.

As has been the case in previous years, the fair is closed Mondays and Tuesdays.

The announcement that the OC Fair will go on this summer comes on the heels of the cancellations of two other local county fairs this year, the Los Angeles County Fair and the Ventura County Fair.

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