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Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival Opens Friday, with New Improvements for Fairgoers

February 15, 2024

INDIO – The Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival presented by Fantasy Springs Resort Casino kicks off its 10-day run tomorrow, continuing a legacy of unforgettable experiences for families and friends, and with many exciting improvements for visitors.

Gates to the 76th Annual Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival open Friday, February 16 following the blessing of the dates ceremony at 2:30 p.m. at Gate 1 of the Riverside County Fairgrounds in Indio, 82-503 Highway 111.

The ceremony will take place right in front of the Fair’s brand new digital marquee, part of a $2 million project to bring beautification and upgrades to improve the Fair experience and the opportunity for more year-round entertainment and community events at the Fairgrounds.

Supervisor V. Manuel Perez looks forward to welcoming fairgoers.

“Growing up in Coachella, and coming to the Fair all the time, every year with my family and friends, and continuing the tradition later on with my family, the Fair has always been fun,” said Supervisor Perez. “We are always continuing to build off of each Fair and, working with Pickering Events, there has been a lot of work done to make this even better and start another 75 years here! It should be a fun time, and I invite everyone to come out to the Fair as well as the parade and other events!”

Newly completed improvements include restroom improvements, fresh paint on the barn, installation of new decorative fencing, and a new digital signboard along with landscaping upgrades to the entrance fronting Highway 111.

The work was funded with $1 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding dedicated by Supervisor Perez and the Board of Supervisors, and $1 million coming from funds from the Riverside County Facilities Management Department and revenue sharing with the operator, Pickering Events, LLC to bring reinvestment to the Fairgrounds.

This is Pickering Events’ second year in a partnership with Riverside County to operate the Fair and the Fairgrounds on a year-round basis.

“We are thrilled to welcome guests to this newly reimagined Fairgrounds,” said CEO Chris Pickering. “Through collaboration with the County and community partners, this event center has transformed into a vibrant cultural hub. The Fair & Date Fest celebrates the very best Riverside County has to offer.”

The Fair & Date Festival starts Friday and runs through Sunday, February 25. With sponsorship by Pickering Events, veterans and first responders will have the opportunity to have free admission to the Fair, including limited tickets for the arena as well. Free tickets for veterans and first responders can be secured by registering online at or

Monday, February 19 is the annual President’s Day Grand Parade, featuring Grand Marshal Douglas Welmas, Chairman for the Cabazon Band of Cahuilla Indians. The parade steps off at 9 a.m. at the intersection of Miles Avenue and Deglet Noor Street in downtown Indio.

Information on special promotions, fair events and ticket prices can be found at


Supervisor V. Manuel Perez represents the Fourth Supervisorial District on the Riverside County Board of Supervisors. The largest district in the county by geography, the 4th District covers eastern Riverside County, from Whitewater, stretching across the entire Coachella Valley south to the Salton Sea, up Highway 74 to Idyllwild and the mountain communities, and heading east of the Coachella Valley to Blythe and the Colorado River.

Supervisor Perez’s office hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Fair and Date Festival