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Food, craft beer and culinary challenges at State Fair of Virginia

state fair of virginiaVisitors to this year’s State Fair of Virginia Sept. 28-Oct. 7 are in for a tasty time.

New and favorite fair foods, a craft beer festival and culinary competitions are among the gastronomic fare at the festival.

Arepas, which are authentic Colombian or Venezuelan corn patties stuffed with cheese or other ingredients, will be among the food options this year. Fairgoers also will be able to enjoy fresh-cut fries topped with Maryland crab dip, and honey-roasted peanut butter ice cream.

They also may be interested in the new Hash Bomb, which is made with Cheddar cheese and bacon nestled between two hash brown patties.

Returning fairgoers will be able to find some of their favorites, including Butt Fries, tater tots smothered with a variety of tempting toppings, corndogs, sausage sandwiches and all varieties of funnel cakes.

For those interested in libations, the fair is hosting the second annual Blue Ribbon Craft Beer Fest on Oct. 6. This year guests can purchase a combination ticket, which includes fair admission and the beer fest for just $30. On-site beer fest tickets will be available for $25 and do not include fair admission.

Attendees will receive a commemorative glass and receive unlimited 4-ounce samples from more than 20 Virginia craft breweries, including Williamsburg’s Alewerks, Richmond’s Ardent Craft Ales and Strangeways breweries and Norfolk’s Coelacanth Brewing.

The Great American SPAM® Competition will be held Oct. 6 at 1 p.m. Fairgoers can see creative concoctions contestants made with this versatile canned meat product. This year’s theme is Hawaii and island-inspired recipes. State Fair winners will compete in the national competition, where the grand prize is a trip for two to the 2019 Waikiki SPAM® Festival in Hawaii.

The 2018 State Fair of Virginia will run from Sept. 28 through Oct. 7. Information is available at

The State Fair is held each fall at its permanent home at The Meadow Event Park in Caroline County. The fair’s mission is to increase agricultural and natural resource awareness and interest through educational programs, exhibitions and competitions in a fun, family-friendly setting.

Augusta Health Augusta Free Press Kris McMackin CPA
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Augusta Free Press