California Mid-State Fair 2018 – Your Ultimate Guide

California Mid State Fair 2016 Activities

The 2018 California Mid State Fair is almost here! From July 18th – 29th 12 pm to 10 pm people from all over the United States will come to Paso Robles for concerts, auctions, carnival rides and a great time. If this is your first visit to the fair, or you remember when it first opened in 1946, we hope this guide will help you have a great time and find what your looking for. This is a BIG list, so to help you navigate everything here is a quick list so you can jump to the section you want:


California Mid State Fair Map


To help you find all of the activities, competitions and concerts, take a look at the mid state fair map so you can see where everything will be happening. Click here to download the California Mid State Fair 2018 map.

California Mid State Fair Concerts


There are big names this year! Below is a list of headliners you can see on the Chumash Grandstand Arena


To see a full list of concerts on all stages click here, for seating charts click here.

California Mid State Fair Activities

California Mid State Fair 2016 Activities

Photo Credit: Anita Ritenour

There is something going every day at the fair. Expand the day below to see the time, event and location:

California Mid State Fair Parking, Shuttles and Lodging




You can park in the lot across the from the fair grounds for $10 before 3:00pm and $15 after 3:00pm. Parking is limited. Pro tip: bring a sunshade so you don’t return to a roasting car. Alternatively, you could park near shuttle locations. Shuttles run every 10 to 15 minutes. Here is where you can find the shuttles:



Westside pick-up / return stops:


Pick Ups:

  • “State Farm” @ 20th/Spring
  • “Citibank” @ 16th/Spring
  • “Bank of America” @ 15th/Spring
  • “Courtyard by Marriott Parking Lot” @ 120 South Vine
  • “City Hall” @ 10th/Spring


Return Drops:

  • “Smart & Final” @ 22nd/Spring
  • “State Farm” @ 20th/Spring
  • “Citibank” @ 16th/Spring
  • “Bank of America” @ 15th/Spring
  • “Courtyard by Marriott parking lot” @ 120 South Vine
  • “City Hall” @ 10th/Spring


Eastside Stops

  • “Lowe’s Hardware” @ Main Parking Lot
  • “Paso Robles High School” @ City Bus Stop
  • “Albertsons Parking Lot” @ City Bus Stop


Click here for more information about travel and lodging.

California Mid-State Fair FAQs


  1. Public Safety Program
    The California Mid-State Fair provides a safe environment for families and all our guests, exhibitors, staff, volunteers and partners. The Fair has a Public Safety Program intended for deterring unwanted activities on the fairgrounds. We are pro-active in our desire to provide this positive experience. As a result, all bags, purses and personal belongings will be screened at entrance gates for contraband. Hand held metal detecting wands will be in use by fair staff. No weapons, food or alcohol will be allowed in. This includes pocket knives of any size or length. Other contraband includes items that would not be allowed onto a commercial airplane.
  2. What items are prohibited from bringing into the Fair?
    The following is a partial list of items people are not allowed to carry onto Fair property. Event staff will be authorized to use their discretion in disallowing items not included on this list:

    • guns, including pellet and BB guns
    • ammunition
    • explosives
    • electric weapons
    • martial arts weapons
    • knives, including pocket knives of any size/length
    • batons
    • brass knuckles
    • mace
    • pepper spray
    • handcuff keys (except for law enforcement/ probation/parole personnel)

    The California Mid-State Fair and its employees will not hold prohibited items discovered during the screening process for persons to retrieve at a later time.

  3. Can I bring in a pocket knife?
    No. Pocket knives of any size or length are not allowed.
  4. Are personal items subject to inspection prior to entrance?
    Yes, this is to ensure the safety of everyone.
  5. Can I bring in a water bottle?
    Yes, you may bring up to two (2) unopened plastic water bottle(s); they are also available for sale from various vendors. There is one public water fountain on the grounds, located in the Main Quad
  6. Where can I find ticket purchasing information?
  7. Where can I park?
    Unfortunately, there is limited parking at the Fair. Our designated parking lot is located on Riverside Avenue directly across from the Paso Robles Event Center. We do offer a free shuttle service to and from the Fair. Locations and pick-up/drop-off times are located under the Travel & Lodging Tab – Local Shuttles.
  8. How much does parking cost?
    In the Paso Robles Event Center parking lot on Riverside Avenue, parking costs $10.00 before 3:00 pm and $20.00 after 3:00 pm. Parking is limited and based on availability.
  9. Is there RV parking?
    There is no RV parking available in our parking lot.
  10. Are their group rates?
    We do not offer group rate discounts. Please refer to the Promotion Tab for theme days and other discount opportunities.
  11. Can I rent a stroller?
    Yes, strollers are available to rent for $10.00 per day and are located at the main entrance. Jogger Strollers, Double Strollers and Wagons are available for $15.00 per day.
  12. Can I take pictures during the concerts?
    Personal cameras are allowed, but professional cameras are not. Standard Lenses (17-50mm, 18-55mm, etc.) are allowed and Telephoto Lenses (24-70mm, 70-200mm, etc.) are not. Audio and video recording is strictly prohibited.
  13. Can I rent a wheelchair?
    Yes, wheelchairs are available for rent for $15.00 per day with a 250 pound weight limit and are located at the main entrance. Motorized wheelchairs are available for $50.00 per day or $35.00 for four hours with a 450 pound weight limit.
  14. Can I bring in my own food?
    No, but don’t worry, there is plenty of food available from a wide array of vendors. You are sure to find something that suits your tastes.
  15. How old do you have be to ride the carnival rides?
    There is no age restriction, but some rides have height limitations to ensure safety.
  16. Do I have to pay admission for my infant?
    No, children 5 years old and under get in free.
  17. At what age does a child need a paid concert ticket into the Chumash Grandstand Arena?
    All people 3 years old and over need a paid ticket. 2 years old and under do not need a ticket.
  18. Can I bring in a dog?
    Animals are not permitted (except seeing-eye and hearing dogs).
  19. How much do food and drinks cost?
    There are over 85 vendors selling food and drinks; prices vary.
  20. Do you have lockers?
    Yes, we will store your belongings for $5.00 per item at the Main Gate Entrance.
  21. How should I dress?
    It can get very hot during the day, so dress accordingly.But, it can also get chilly at night, so make sure to bring a sweater if you plan on staying into the evening. For your safety, shirts and shoes must be worn at all times.
  22. How do I find something I’ve lost?
    Lost and Found is located in the Event Staff Trailer in the south end of The Paso Robles Event Center.
  23. Is re-entry available?
    Convenient exit and re-entry is available with a hand-stamp at the Main Exit Gate.
  24. Is smoking allowed on premises?
    The California Mid-State Fair is a smoke-free and vapor-free event. Smoking of any kind, including the use of pipes, e-cigarettes, vapors or similar devices of any kind, is prohibited. Thank you very much for your consideration!
  25. How do I pay for things?
    Most concession/vendor booths are CASH ONLY but some will accept debit and/or credit cards. Entry gates and box office accept VISA/MC/AMEX (along with cash for purchase).
  26. Are there ATM machines?
    Yes, ATM machines are conveniently located throughout the grounds.

We hope this guide to the 2018 California Mid State Fair has been helpful! Before you go, why not take a moment to see if your home qualifies to save with solar? Fill out this simple form and we’ll call you right away to start the conversation.


Have a tip of your own? Leave a comment below!

Comments 2

  1. If I pay my way in can I leave the fairgrounds briefly and return without paying to get in again

    1. Post

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