In accordance with Cal Expo’s own values and the directives issued by the Governor and California Department of Public Health, Cal Expo’s Board voted unanimously during its April 24 Board Meeting to cancel the 2020 California State Fair and Food Festival scheduled for July 17 – August 2, 2020, until 2021 due to the extensive challenges posed by the COVID-19 public health crisis. 

On behalf of the Board, Cal Expo General Manager and CEO Rick Pickering issued the following statement regarding the cancellation:

While we had remained hopeful the California State Fair would be able to continue our 166-year tradition of showcasing the best of California and entertaining the state’s residents and families, it’s clear the impact of COVID-19 will continue to be felt for the foreseeable future and that large gatherings should be postponed at this time. Based on the advice of health experts and the continued guidance issued by the governor, the Cal Expo Board has decided to cancel the California State Fair and Food Festival until 2021.

The health and safety of the community, our guests, and staff is our number one priority. Cancelling this summer’s California State Fair is the right thing to do, and is in line with the measured, scientific approach that’s been implemented by the governor and health officials to fight COVID-19. California Exposition and State Fair is a proud member of the statewide community and we will continue to do our part to combat COVID-19.

Currently, Cal Expo is playing a regional role in the effort to combat the virus, including serving as a drive-through testing site, as well as a temporary emergency isolation trailer facility for homeless individuals who have been exposed or infected. 

Cancelling the California State Fair and many of the 200 year-round events hosted at Cal Expo is having a significant economic impact on Cal Expo and the region. We are sensitive to the fact Cal Expo is a regional, economic engine that generates sales tax revenue and employs over 800 seasonal workers. Our staff is working diligently on a strategy to safely reopen when appropriate and we look forward to the time when we can all gather again safely to celebrate the great things Californians have done and will do in the future.

About Cal Expo & California State Fair
The California State Fair is an international award-winning fair, receiving top honors at the International Association of Fairs and Expositions out of more than 1,100 fairs world-wide. The California State Fair is dedicated as a place to celebrate the best the state has to offer in agriculture, technology, and the diversity of its people, traditions, and trends that shape the Golden State’s future.



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