Image courtesy of Mariel Smith/Capital Photography Center.

September in SW DC, will see the return of contests that crown the city’s best growers, crafters, and cooks, performances from local bands and dance troupes, and more than 35 food, art, and craft vendors showcasing and selling their wares. All of this will take place in a single event: the eighth annual DC State Fair at Waterfront Station on Sunday, Sept. 24, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

This celebration of all things homegrown is unique among local fairs and festivals. The DC State
Fair is run entirely by volunteers, is free to attend, and is held in different neighborhoods from
year to year. This year, the DC State Fair has partnered with the Southwest Business
Improvement District to bring this daylong event to Waterfront Station.

While the DC State Fair is inspired by time-honored state fair traditions—growing and gardening,
animal husbandry, and deep-fried foods—it also honors the things that make the District unique. This means the DC State Fair holds competitions to find the best pupusas, mumbo sauce, and Double Dutch jumpers in the city, puts on a Pet Parade instead of a pig race, and works with local businesses and organizations that are committed to helping our community thrive.

This year, for instance, the DC State Fair has partnered with the volunteer-run floating school
Knowledge Commons DC to bring demonstrations and workshops to its Education Stage. It has
also partnered for the second year with local food truck NeatMeatDC to supply the sandwiches in
its Sloppy Joe Eating Contest and local brew pub The Public Option to craft a tribute to the winner
of its Homebrew Contest after the Fair has ended.

Want to participate in the DC State Fair? Enter a contest, volunteer, or just show up on the big
day! Learn more at


Our contests for kids and adults highlight local talent and foster friendly competition among
District of Columbia residents. Several favorites will return in 2017 (including honey, homebrew,
pickled foods, pie, and the history-making Best Bud), and new contests have been added (including
bread, fiber art, and wine). For the second year, live competitions will encourage fair-goers to get
the recognition they deserve as the best hula-hooper, watermelon seed spitter, or whisker warrior
in town.

Pet Parade

For the third year, friendly pets on leashes, in cages, in tanks, or in aquariums are invited to march
in our Pet Parade. Pets and their owners are encouraged to don costumes or enter our pet-themed
contests, from Most Unidentifiable Mutt to Best Frisbee Catcher, Best Tennis Ball Fetcher, and
Longest Sit-Stay.

Education, Entertainment, and More

The fair will be packed with activities and entertainment for everyone. Our Education Stage will
feature demonstrations and workshops coordinated by Knowledge Commons DC. Our Main Stage
will feature live competitions and performances from local artists. Our Kid’s Corner will feature
free activities for children and kid-specific contests like ice cream eating and a water balloon

Vendors and Exhibitors

More than 35 food, drink, art, and craft vendors will showcase and sell their wares at the fair.
Local businesses will offer apparel and accessories for people and pets, prints, posters, plants,
ceramics, kitchen supplies, home goods, and more. Twenty government agencies and nonprofit
organizations will also exhibit at the fair.

About the DC State Fair

The DC State Fair is a free showcase of the city’s agricultural and creative talents. The daylong
celebration of all things homegrown features competitions, education, and entertainment, with
local vendors on hand selling food, drinks, art, and crafts. The first DC State Fair was held on
Aug. 28, 2010. The DC State Fair is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization run entirely by

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