From Great Falls to Baker, Here’s Who’s Playing at Montana Fairs
Summer means fair season in Montana and for many us, the fair is a fond tradition. Most fairs in Montana offer an enjoyable blend of agriculture, crafts, rodeos, concerts, and other entertainment. Kids of all ages love the carnival and adults may enjoy sipping a cold draft beer and testing their luck on the games too.
Hit the road to a tiny town fair for something different.
With gas prices so ridiculously high this summer, perhaps you've scaled back on your cross-country road trip plans. How about hitting the road to one of Montana's fairs, instead? MontanaFair in Billings and the Montana State Fair in Great Falls are probably the two biggest (which we'll cover below) but don't overlook the county fairs around the state. Make it a mini Montana vacation weekend and play tourist in a small town you likely don't visit very often.
We've compiled a list of some of the best fairs in Big Sky Country, along with headlining entertainment at each.
MontanaFair, August 12 - 20 in Billings
Called "the last best place of summer", MontanaFair draws thousands to MetraPark. The midway is filled with rides and games from the Mighty Thomas Carnival and there's something for everyone. Headlining entertainers this year include:
- Elle King, August 12
- Collective Soul with Switchfoot, August 13
- Nelly, August 14
See the full MontanaFair calendar HERE.
Montana State Fair, July 29 - August 6 in Great Falls
I've always felt the concerts at the Montana State Fair in Great Falls equal or rival those in Billings, and this year they've lined up another great roster of entertainment in the Electric City.
- The Beach Boys, July 31
- Skillet, August 1
- Cheap Trick, August 3
- Chase Rice, August 5
- Dwight Yoakum, August 6
You find more details and ticket info for the Montana State Fair HERE.
Fallon County Fair, August 16 - 21 in Baker.
Southeastern Montana is cowboy country and the Fallon County Fair reflects the community's western heritage. Rodeo action dominates the nighttime entertainment roster. The concert headliner this year is Jordan Davis on August 20. Find more details on the Fallon County Fair HERE.
Eastern Montana Fair, August 24 - 27 in Miles City
Sure, you've probably been to the Custer County fairgrounds for the world-famous Bucking Horse sale, but have you ever been to Miles City for the fair? It's four big days of small-town fun, just a short drive from Billings. The concert headliner this year is Billy Dean on August 26. You can find more info on the Eastern Montana Fair Facebook page.
Big Sky Country State Fair, July 20 - 24 in Bozeman
Last year, my wife really wanted to see Trace Adkins at the fair in Bozeman, so we did. It was a great time. The backdrop of the Bridger Mountains is tough to beat, and as the sun set and the stage lights came on, the party had a pretty cool vibe. Here's who's headlining this year in Bozeman.
- T.I. w/ special guest Willie Jones, July 20
- Russell Dickerson w/ special guest Eddie Montgomery, July 21
- Brantley Gilbert, July 22
You can find out more about the Big Sky Country State Fair HERE.
Last Chance Stampede and Fair, July 27 - 30 in Helena
The rodeo was named the best Medium Rodeo in 2017 and the grandstands feature many improvements and seating for 4,600. The party should be fun this year, especially when Randy Houser and Jimmie Allen hit the stage on July 27. Find out more about the Last Chance Stampede and Fair HERE.
Rosebud Treasure County Fair, July 20 - 23 in Forsyth
A couple of years ago we loaded up the family truckster and cruised over to Forsyth for the night to catch a country band my wife wanted to see. We stayed at a mom-n-pop hotel and played tourists in Forsyth for 24 hours or so. I loved that the carnival lines at this fair were much, much shorter than in Billings and my kids had a blast. The headliner this year is Jo Dee Messina on July 22. You can find more details on the Rosebud Treasure County Fair HERE.
Got a favorite fair? Let us know in the Comments.
Leading Theories About D.B. Cooper and 30 other unsolved mysteries