Besides rides, fried food and the Butter Cow, the Ohio State Fair is known for its plentiful music.
Free music, including folk, bluegrass to blues, indie rock and Latin fusion, will be playing at the Main Street Stage and the AARP Ohio Gazebo Stage several times a day.
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WIllie Nelson will perform at the Ohio State Fair on Aug. 5
Country music legend Willie Nelson will be playing and singing on Aug. 5.
At 89, the country icon shows no signs of slowing down. He just released his 97th studio album, “A Beautiful Time,” and in September, he will have a new book out. “Paul and Me” describes his friendship with his best friend and long-time drummer, Paul English, who died in 2020.
After writing songs for others in the ’50s, including “Funny How Time Slips Away” and “Crazy,” he turned to recording his own music, where he became one of the pioneers of outlaw country. He has a full schedule of gigs this summer, including several in Ohio, following a July 4 concert in Austin where he invited Beto O’Rourke onstage to join him on guitar.
Rapper Ice Cube takes the stage on Aug. 4
Rapper and actor Ice Cube will appear on Aug. 4. The rapper, who made a name for himself as part of gangsta rap group N.W.A., when he wrote most of the lyrics on the group’s album “Straight Outta Compton,” is not touring heavily this year: his Ohio State Fair concert is one of four U.S. appearances scheduled for the remainder of 2022.
Ice Cube recently united with fellow rap veterans Snoop Dogg, E-40 and Too $hort to form supergroup Mount Westmore, which just released its first album, “Bad MFs.” These days, when he’s not rapping, he’s promoting his 3-on-3 pro basketball league, Big3.
Comedian Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias will perform at the Celeste Center on Aug. 3
Comedian Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias will perform at the Celeste Center on Aug. 3. The popular standup comic, who has also made a name for himself as a voice actor, is returning to the stage in a big way this summer after stepping back from touring for several years. Expect generally family-friendly stories about his life and family.
Toby Keith unable to attend fair
Unfortunately, country star Toby Keith, who was scheduled to perform at the fair on July 28, will not be able to play. He announced via social media on June 12 that he has been battling stomach cancer.
“I’ve spent the last 6 months receiving chemo, radiation and surgery. So far, so good. I need time to breathe, recover and relax. I am looking forward to spending this time with my family. But I will see the fans sooner than later. I can’t wait,” Keith wrote.
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2022 Ohio State Fair concert lineup
All events take place at the WCOL Celeste Center. (Note: Tickets purchased in advance also provide admission to the fair)
• July 27: Kidz Bop Live, 6:30 p.m., $20
• July 28: Generation Radio, 7 p.m., free
• July 29: Foreigner, 7:30 p.m., $40 to $50
• July 30: Nelly, 7 p.m., $35 to $45
• July 31: All-Ohio State Fair Band and Youth Choir, 1 p.m., free
• July 31: Dru Hill and Raheem DeVaughn, 7:30 p.m., $30
• Aug. 1: Zach Williams, 7 p.m., $30
• Aug. 2: The Drifters, 1 p.m., free
• Aug. 2: Scotty McCreery, 7:30 p.m. Aug. 2, $30
• Aug. 3: Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias, 7 p.m., $45 to $55
• Aug. 4: Ice Cube, 7 p.m., $40 to $50
• Aug. 5: Willie Nelson, 7:30 p.m., $47
• Aug. 6: Lakeside and Con Funk Shun, 7 p.m., $30
Free music acts at the Ohio State Fair
• There are a variety of free music acts performing at the fair. For a complete list, visit the fair website https://www.ohiostatefair.com/p/entertainment/concerts1
Dates of the 2022 Ohio State Fair
• July 27 through Aug. 7
• Monday to Friday: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., except for Aug. 7, when gates close at 6 p.m.
Tickets to the fair
• At the gate: $10 for ages 13 to 59, $8 for ages 6 to 12 and 60 and older, free for children 5 and younger. Advance tickets $8 through July 26 online.
• A variety of discount days are available. For more information, visit https://www.ohiostatefair.com/p/visit/special-days
• Parking is free. Take I-71 to exit 111 (17th Avenue). Signs and parking attendants will direct guests to parking areas. Free shuttles will transport guests from parking areas to the fairgrounds.
• Camping will be available at the rate of $50 a night. Reservations required. RV camping only — no tents.
• ATM machines will be available at the fairgrounds
• Accessible parking is available, assisted listening devices are available free for concerts, manual wheelchairs ($25/day) and electric scooters ($65/day) can be reserved, wheelchair charging stations are available and service animals are permitted.