First held in Cincinnati in 1850, the Ohio State Fair was organized by the Ohio Board of Agriculture to promote agricultural education and to recognize achievements.
The second fair was held in Franklinton, which is now part of Columbus, on the farm of Michael Sullivant. In order to increase interest in participation during its early years, the Ohio State Fair traveled to various locations around Ohio, including Cleveland, Zanesville, and Newark.
In 1874, Columbus won a bid to host the fair for a five-year trial period, and it has remained in Columbus ever since.
Conveniently located adjacent to major railroad lines, these Ohio State Fairgrounds were dedicated on August 31, 1886.
Today, the Ohio State Fair attracts families from all over the state, thanks to a spectacular midway, big-name entertainment, hundreds of exhibits, and one of the largest junior fair shows in the nation.