What is the special week of fun that we can’t wait for? It’s always right around the second week of July when the summer is in full swing, the annual Clinton County Fair!
As in years past, there will be something for every age group to enjoy, including a parade, contests, carnival rides, games, exhibits, music, and lots of great food. Look for laughter and excitement at the midway with rides and games, in the arena with tractor pulls, and nightly entertainment. And let’s not forget the food. Some of us wait all year for that!
An Annual Tradition
The fair celebrates our farming and country life. It has been a Clinton County tradition since 1951, and every year it brings together young and old to celebrate country life—agriculture, livestock, and farm machinery—providing plenty of displays, activities, and entertainment to keep the entire family happy for days. Many activities center around livestock, with animal judging occurring throughout the week. Gear geeks will love checking out the tractors and other machinery, while others will see who’s made the ultimate pies, quilts, or crafts.
Although some of the themes and displays may change from year to year, it’s nice to know that you can count on a consistent format:
Clinton County Fair Basics
- Location: 1899 Methodist St, Carlyle, IL
- Dates: July 15 – 22, 2023
- Parking: Paid parking is available, as well as a weekly pass
- Concessions, Vendors, and Carnival: Daily 5:30 pm – 10:30 pm
- Details for 2023 County Fair
Daily: Rides, Concessions, and Vendors from 5:30 pm – 10:30 pm.
2023 Who’s the Fairest 5K Flyer
Start the Fair with an 8 am 5K Run/Walk to benefit the Clinton County Pageant Program and a selected charity. The themes are “Run like it’s almost midnight” and “It’s about more than high heels and hairspray.” All runners start at the Fairground Main Entrance.
- Bring in for judging your baked goods, crops, photography, art, horticulture, and school projects to the arts and science building.
- Judging of dairy in the show barn.
- 4H Rabbit, Poultry, and Dairy Show.
- Parade Downtown Carlyle at 6 pm. The parade highlights the area’s agricultural roots, the current County Fair Queen, and each year’s Queen and Little Miss contestants. Every year businesses present floats with a different theme hoping to win cash prizes.
- Presentation in the Show Barn after the parade by Pageant Committee and Queen Contestants.
- 9 am Swine Judging in the Show Barn.
- Evening Truck Pull and IL Stock Pullers in the Arena.
- 4-H Competitions of Swine, Beef, Goats, and Sheep.
- 4-H Junior Master Showmanship Show.
- 4-H Super Master Showmanship Show.
- PM Free Parking for Hero Night.
- Clinton County Ninja Warrior.
- FFA Pedal Pull.
- Live Music from 8 pm – 11 pm.
- Judging Steer.
- Judging Sheep.
- PM Clinton County Tractor Pull and Illinois Hot Farm Stock Pull (fee may apply).
- Live music 8:30 pm – 11:30 pm.
- Judging Beef.
- Jr. Livestock Auction.
- PM Rodeo (fee may apply).
- Live Music 8:00 pm – 12:00 am.
- Pageant for Clinton County Queen at the Mater Dei Catholic High School, Breese @ 1 pm.
- Demolition Derby 7 pm (fee may apply).
Start Planning Now
Mark your calendars and plan to come for this fun event! As everyone who’s ever been to the Fair knows, summer just isn’t complete without a visit to the Clinton County, IL, Fair. Of all the summer events we love, nothing tops the Clinton County Fair. It’s a wonderful mix of rural life, entertainment, fun foods, and healthy competition. We also would like to thank the Clinton County Fair Board for their continued dedication to keeping this historic tradition going. Start planning now for your vacation in Southwestern IL!
Photo: Lori Jansen, courtesy of Clinton County Fair.