Our front desk associates often hear, “So, we’re here and having so much fun, we’d like to extend our stay but what activities to you have nearby for our entire family to enjoy?” Well, they’ll soon be in luck!  Nestled amongst the cornfields in nearby Goshen (a mere 15 miles from Oakwood Resort) lies the Elkhart County 4-H Fairgrounds.

Budget-Friendly Activities

Traditionally, this long awaited 9-day event is held the final week of July each year.  Admission cost is FREE on Sunday but if your schedule allows you to attend on another day, that is highly recommended unless you’re able to arrive prior to 10am.  (As you can imagine, complimentary admission brings most everyone in the community out to enjoy the Fair as a family.)  Admission all other days is $8.00 for ages 10 and up and with that, there are abundant free entertainment options.  Children can participate in everything from frog jumping contests to a cell phone photo scavenger hunt and visit Young McDonald’s Farm.  Adults will certainly take advantage of watching the horseshoe pitching competitions, participating in health screenings and visiting the outdoor commercial exhibits.

Everyone in the family will enjoy the annual Fair Parade that takes place on Sunday.  This event typically boasts over 140 entries from civic organizations, local high school bands, 4-H clubs, church groups and everything between.  The grandstand stage lights up Saturday through Wednesday nights for concerts at 8pm.  The Fair has hosted top entertainers like Faith Hill, Brad Paisley, Martina McBride, Hunter Hayes, Lady Antebellum and Florida Georgia Line.  Grandstand seating is free but reserved track seats can be purchased online in advance.

All day Thursday beginning at 8am the grandstand hosts a Lucas Oil sanctioned tractor pull.  Guests can enjoy watching farm stock tractors, super modified 2WD trucks, farm tractors, hot rod semi’s and more.

Friday is rodeo day with two scheduled; the first at 1pm and the second at 8pm and Saturday night wraps up with a demolition derby beginning at 7pm.

Abundant free options are offered but naturally, you’ll want some cash on hand to purchase amazing Fair food and maybe wrap up the day with a ride on the ferris wheel.  With such an array of fun of choose from on the 300+ acre Fairgrounds, you can easily spend an hour of quality time with those you love or spend an entire day (or two!).

 Local Tradition

The first Fair was held in 1851 by local farmers whose goal was to have the event serve as a demonstration grounds to educate and train other area farmers.  Much growth and expansion has taken place since that time.  With an annual average attendance of over 280,000, the Elkhart County 4-H Fair is now one of the top 10 ticketed events.  More than 3,700 youth participate in the 4-H program and work to “Make the Best Better”.

Non-Fair Events

Following the Fair, the grounds is used throughout the year to host RV Rallies, Auctions, for winter storage of boats, rv’s and motorcycles and as an event site for wedding receptions and parties.  For more information regarding the Elkhart County 4-H Fair, please visit the website at 4HFair.org or call 574-533-3247.  The 2016 Fair will take place July 22-30.


To make this event a truly unique experience, book your family’s stay at Oakwood Resort.  Experience an incredible vacation resort while your family visits the Fair.  Located on the edge of Lake Wawasee, Indiana’s largest natural lake, Oakwood Resort is the ideal spot for your family vacation or weekend escape while visiting the Fair in Goshen, IN.  We offer many lodging options, including spacious rooms, luxury suites and vacation homes.  Complete your retreat at our on-site restaurant and bar and enjoy our full service Aveda concept salon & spa.  Rooms are booking fast so call now at (574)457-7100 or visit us at Oakwood Resort.