163rd California State Fair Under Way

Food and thrill ride safety and fairgoers' security will be paramount throughout the fair. The new entertainment options this year include a high dive show where divers jump from an 80-foot platform into a pool of water below during three daily shows.

The 163rd California State Fair opened its gates on July 8 for a 17-day run in Sacramento, with new rides, cooking competitions, concerts, and a First Responders Appreciation Day on July 21 among the featured events.

Food and thrill ride safety and fairgoers' security will be paramount throughout the fair. The new entertainment options this year include a high dive show where divers jump from an 80-foot platform into a pool of water below during three daily shows. Two professional rugby matches will be presented July 9 and 23.

Other new features include a California on the Move: Air, Land & Sea exhibit about the role of transportation in California, including a prototype of a flying car; Whale Tales, which educates visitors about California's coastal regions and offers a Coastal Animal Show involving opossums, snakes, pelicans, hawks, and more, plus a Nature Exhibit area that has been renovated to feature native California plants that use less water; and a plant cloning machine from Garden Smart. The fair's website reports the machine is installed in the HydroAg Greenhouse at The Kaiser Permanente Farm, a "one-of-kind machine [that] could change the agriculture industry by saving water and valuable land space. Guests can even take home their own strawberry plant.

First Responders Appreciation Day means active members of law enforcement, firefighters, and first responder units get free admission on July 21, courtesy of BloodSource.

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