The 2019 Illinois State Fair has been officially dubbed the most successful in state history. This year’s $6.5 million in revenue this year exceeds money brought in for the 2018 fair by approximately $750,000 and surpasses the previous record of $6.4 million set in 2013. Illinois State Fair Manager Kevin Gordon explains how some of the record was set: “We reduced our adult admission prices by 50% and still went ahead and brought in $24,000 more at the gate. Staff negotiated over three-quarters of a million dollars this year in corporate sponsorships.”
Today’s revenue announcement comes on top of a record-setting year at the grandstand with 63,633 tickets sold, bringing in a record $2.3 million. Estimated attendance totals of nearly 509,000 were 37% higher than 2018’s projection of just over 370,000, making it the largest attendance since 2014. This data represents conservative estimates, with the final numbers being released for 2018 and 2019 in the auditor’s report in October or November. Gordon says it’s a tough act to follow, but that planning for 2020 has already begun with booking acts for the grandstand next year.