FORT WALTON BEACH, Fla. (WKRG) — The Northwest Florida Fair Association will hold its fair from Sept. 27 to Oct. 7 at the Northwest Florida Fairgrounds in Fort Walton Beach.

Fair operations manager Brian Sparling told WKRG News 5 that the 2022 fair will not be a free entry like 2021. Entry will cost a $5 donation fee to one of five charities. Ride wristbands and costs for other attractions can be bought once inside.

The fair will have a midway on the 10-acre lot and vendors across the fairgrounds. Sparling said the fair will feature livestock and booths from the local 4-H clubs, despite being hit hard by the pandemic.

“COVID kind of hit everybody pretty hard and the 4-H lost a lot of their members in 2020-21 so they’re kind of working their way back up to get their numbers back,” said Sparling. “So their participation, as far as the stock and the cows, Chickens and all that other stuff isn’t gonna be as great this year as it normally would be but they are going to participate and have some displays.”

The Northwest Florida fairgrounds recently went up for discussion between Okaloosa County and the City of Fort Walton Beach for ownership. As the entities decide what to do about selling the property, Sparling said the fair will remain the same.

“As far as the fair is concerned, it will continue as it always has,” said Sparling. “What would change if the county takes over ownership is the Northwest Florida Fair Association would not be running the fairgrounds as we have for 50 years. The county would make it a county facility like the Convention Center and we could still hold the fair at the fairgrounds. We just would not be in charge of the day-to-day operations.”

The website is still being updated with new information for the 2022 fair schedule. Check back for updates.

About the NW Florida Fair:

Since 1974 the Northwest Florida Fair Association has held its annual Fair to promote agriculture by showcasing a variety of livestock species, art displays and a carnival for all to enjoy.

Northwest Florida Fair Association

The fairgrounds are located at 1958 Lewis Turner Boulevard in Fort Walton Beach.

Other events at the fairgrounds:

While currently in charge of daily operations, Sparling said the fairgrounds have many events on the fall 2022 schedule.

“Inside the buildings, we will be having a gun show the first week of September and we will also be having a reception following the gun show,” said Sparling.