Fair at the PNE – August 20 – September 5, 2011

Like everyone else, I hate that our (short) summer is coming to a close (sniff), but if there is one thing that makes that thought bearable it’s the annual Fair at the PNE, Vancouver’s farewell to summer that everyone loves, young and old alike.

Celebrating its 101st birthday this year, the 2011 Fair at the PNE is back bigger and better than ever. There are the rides, of course—including Playland’s brand-new Atmosfear—plus free Summer Night Concerts, live shows, Superdogs, mini-donuts, exhibitions, pig races, fairground games, and so much more!

Superdogs at the Fair at the PNE

Highlights of the 2011 Fair at the PNE

Summer Night Concerts
Free with admission to the Fair, the nightly concerts at the West Jet Concert Stage attract major music stars. On the roster for 2011: Daryl Hall & John Oates, Chris Isaak, Kenny Rogers, Kim Mitchell, Wilson Phillips, Air Supply, Donny Osmond, Delhi 2 Dublin, En Karma, One More Girl, Hey Ocean! and Andrew Allen, Stereos, Crystal Shawanda, and Serena Ryder & The Beauties. Complete line-up here.

Live Shows
Also free with admission are the Fair’s wide variety of live shows, including the ever-popular Superdogs, plus Peking Acrobats, the amateur PNE Star Showdown (like a mini Canadian Idol), and the all-day pyrotechnics of Pop City.

Attractions & Games
It’s not a fair if you can’t win your date a stuffed animal in a show of Ring Toss mastery, right? The Fair has all the midway games you love—from Wac a Mole to Big Bang balloon popping—plus attractions like the Haunted Mansion, Arcade, Climbing Wall and more.

Playland Rides
All of Playland’s 55+ rides are part of the Fair (though you do need to pay separately for a ride pass), including the new Atmosfear, which swings 360° while going 70km/hr at 218 feet in the air, and the classic Wooden Roller Coaster.

Of course, there’s also the food—deep fried oreos, bbq turkey legs, “whales tales”—and all the animals in the Agricultural section, from the graceful equines of the Pacific Spirit Horse Show to the baby chicks and piglets at Safeway Farm Country and the Kidz Discovery Farm.

Personally, I’ve been looking forward to the Fair all summer—this is the first year my son is old enough to go, and I can’t wait to take him! I honestly think he may explode with excitement when he sees the animals, and I’m dying to get a picture of him riding with his papa on the carousel (a tradition in our family).

September may be depressingly close, but at least we all have one more thing to look forward to: The 2011 Fair at the PNE runs from August 20 – September 5, 2011.

See also:
The Guide to PNE Discounts & Freebies
Playland in Pictures: A Vancouver Summer Tradition

Have a favourite part of the Fair at the PNE? Please share your Fair favourites and memories in the comments!

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