The information on this page applies to the 2015 San Diego County Fair, which ended July 5. Information on the 2016 Fair will be posted in the spring of 2016.
Can I bring...
My pet? No.
The only animals allowed on the grounds are service dogs, animals on exhibit, or those used in entertainment. We do not have accommodations for pets at the Fairgrounds. Should you need day boarding, we suggest the Helen Woodward Animal Center, 6461 El Apajo Road, Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067, Phone: (858) 756-4117. Or, check the FindPetCare.com Web site for other pet boarding facilities.
Knives, scissors, and other sharp implements? No, with an exception.
Because we want the Fair to be a fun and safe experience, we have metal detectors and bag searches as you enter the Fairgrounds. All sharp metal objects, such as pocket knives, tableware, scissors and the like, are strictly prohibited, as are guns and other weapons. Please leave these items at home, or in your vehicle. If you wonder whether something is allowed or not, probably it is not. Please help us keep the Fair fun for all.
Among the items that may be confiscated are small pocket knives, nail clippers if they also have a folding nail file, and small scissors. If you have any of these items when you reach the security checkpoint, you can either take them back to your vehicle or dispose of them. (An exception is made for shears, which are considered tools, that Fairgoers intend to trade, sell, or have repaired through an authorized Fair vendor. Shears must be properly identified and displayed before entering the gates. It is recommended that shears have blades taped shut.)
Pepper spray? No.
We prohibit anything that can be used as a weapon. This includes pepper spray and similar sprays. Please check your purses and pockets before you come to the Fair for anything you carry around to use for self-defense.
My own food and beverages? Yes.
"Fair food" is a big reason why people visit the Fair, but if you have dietary or other reasons for wanting to bring your own food or beverages, please do. Please note: Alcohol, glass containers and metal knives and forks are prohibited. Also, all beverages must be in factory-sealed containers (meaning reusuable containers such as sports water bottles and sippy cups cannot contain beverages when you go through the security check at the entrances). Please consume your food at one of the six designated picnic areas, which are marked on the Fairgrounds map in the printed program. Some vendors provide seating for their customers; please respect that.
Coolers or ice chests? Yes.
We provide complimentary cooler check-in at Guest Services, or you can check it for a nominal charge at the stroller and wheelchair rental locations at the entrance gates. Your cooler will be searched as you enter the grounds; please do not pack alcohol, glass containers or sharp metal utensils.
Backpacks, camera bags, and diaper bags? Yes.
These types of items will be inspected as you enter the Fair. You will need to unzip (unsnap, untie, etc.) all compartments so security personnel can look inside.
A motorized wheelchair? Yes.
Guests with disabilities are permitted to bring in motorized scooters with three or more wheels to be used as a mobility device. You can also rent non-motorized wheelchairs or electric scooters at the Fair. Please see the "Strollers, Wheelchairs, Lockers" page for more information.
A skateboard or roller skates? No.
The Fair attracts large crowds, and we want everyone to move at about the same pace for safety reasons. Please leave skateboards, scooters, roller skates (including children's wheeled shoes) and other wheeled toys at home or in your vehicle.
A bicycle? Yes.
You may ride your bicycle to the Fair, but you may not bring it inside the gates. Free bike racks are set up at the O'Brien Gate ("main gate") and the West Gate (near the Fun Zone). You may lock your bikes at either location, using your own lock.
A wagon or a stroller? Yes.
Small children may be pulled in a wagon at walking speed by adults or responsible older children. You can bring your own stroller, or rent one here.
Cigarettes or e-cigarettes? No.
For the comfort of all Fair visitors, the San Diego County Fair is a no-smoking, no-vaping event.
An umbrella? Yes, with restrictions.
Because umbrellas have sharp points on the tip and supports, please use a wide-brimmed hat as a sun shield. Rain is a very rare occurrence at the Fair. If you must use an umbrella for shade, it can not be more than three feet in diameter. Please do not use an umbrella in crowded areas.
A folding chair? Yes, with restrictions.
Finding seating is usually not a problem at the Fair. If you have a disability that requires you to sit frequently and you would like to bring a folding chair, you may, with the following restrictions: You may not use the chair in the following locations: Fun Zone, Grandstand, Coors Light Rock On Stage,
Paddock area during the Paddock Concert Series. You also may not obstruct pedestrian traffic. If a staff member asks you to move your chair, please comply.
My Camera? Tripod?
Yes, we want you to document your fun family memories spent here at the Fair! Please note that some exhibits and venues permit photography; others do not, so please observe the signs. Audio/video recording, flash photography, and iPads/Kindles/tablets are NOT allowed on rides or in concert venues. Cameras with removable lenses are only allowed if approved in advance by our Media Department or during "Photo Shoot-outs" sanctioned through our Photography Exhibit. Tripods can be a trip hazard, so we do not permit their use in the Fun Zone and other crowded areas, as they must not impede pedestrian traffic.
Selfie sticks? Monopods?
No. Selfie sticks and related items (including monopods, unlike tripods) are not permitted inside the Fair or on the Fairgrounds.
A gun? No, with an exception.
For the safety of our guests and employees, guns may not be brought onto the Fairgrounds. However, off-duty, qualified law enforcement officers (as defined in 18 U.S.C. section 926B) or qualified, retired law enforcement officers (as defined in 18 U.S.C. section 926C) will be allowed to carry concealed weapons into the Fair.
These individuals must identify themselves to Security at the Fair’s entrances with the proper credentials required by law. The credentials required of qualified off-duty or retired law enforcement officers by 18 U.S.C. sections 926B and 926C will be verified by a San Diego County Sheriff’s deputy. In addition, qualified off-duty and retired law enforcement officers will be required to sign a document attesting to their compliance with all pertinent state and federal laws and the policies and procedures of their individual employers; and, that they are not at the time of entry, nor will be while on the Fairgrounds, under the influence of alcohol or any intoxicating or hallucinatory drug.
Qualified off-duty or retired law enforcement officers with questions about this policy may contact the Fair’s Security Office at firstname.lastname@example.org. News media with questions may contact the Fair's Media Office at email@example.com. Members of the public with questions may contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Promotional materials for my business or band? Can I approach patrons, contracted vendors and/or performers for business?
No. Unauthorized solicitation of business of any kind with patrons, contracted vendors, and/or performers is strictly prohibited. Unapproved solicitors will be escorted off grounds and unauthorized promotional materials will be confiscated. A fine of $200 per occurrence will be assessed to any performer, performance group, vendor, radio station or other Fair participant whose unapproved promotional materials are found anywhere on the grounds.
Advertising flyers? Yes, if they are distributed only within your space.
A fine of $500 per violation applies to the distribution of flyers, authorized or non-authorized, outside your performance time and stage, or booth space.
If you want to know whether you can bring something or not, please send email to email@example.com.