GRAND ISLAND–(KFOR Sept. 8)–There’s continued growth with attendance at the Nebraska State Fair.

Officials with the Fair on Friday announced that attendance broke 300,000 for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic, with 311,909 guests attending the 11-day event that started Aug. 25 and wrapped up on Sept. 4 at Fonner Park in Grand Island. That’s an 8.5% growth over 2022.

“Whatever Your Flavor also extended to weather temperatures at the 2023 Nebraska State Fair,” said Jaime Parr, Nebraska State Fair executive director. “We had plenty of heat, as well as some rain and lightning, but we had some really pleasant weather days, too. A little bit of everything. Despite the hot closing weekend, attendance was really solid.”

Part of the excitement for the 2023 fair were new programs like the Fair-tastic Friday low sensory day event, the ATV Big Air Tour, Ultimate Bullriding and eight national concert performers during the seven-event Nebraska Lottery Concert Series on the State Fair stages.

“This year’s fair had something for everyone. Whether it was the 7,333 livestock entries, extensive entertainment, fun competitions, or wonderful choices of food, the variety was incredible. And we had the 4 millionth visitor to the fair in Grand Island. We can’t wait to welcome Nebraskans to their State Fair again next year,” said Parr.

The a new theme for the Fair was announced Friday. “All Roads Lead to Fun” for the 2024 Nebraska State Fair, running August 23 to September 2, 2024.