Your Guide to 2023 Pa. Farm Show: Parking, food, goat yoga – but no baby chicks

The countdown begins for the 2023 Pennsylvania Farm Show.

The January tradition is Pennsylvania’s version of the state fair, and it also gives everyone a chance to break their New Year’s resolutions (fried cheese cube, anyone?), learn about the state’s vast agriculture industry and pet small animals.

Visitors will find traditional features such as oil sculpture, animal races, a calving area, PA’s favorite culinary joint and, of course, a food court.

Mixed in are some new attractions – goat yoga, llamas and a new limited edition PA Milkshake flavored Orange Cream.

There is something for everyone at the event. To help you make the most of your visit, here’s an official guide to the 2023 Farm Show:

when is the show

Visitors will have eight days to explore Farm Show 2023, which will be held from January 7 to 14. Opening hours are 8am to 9pm daily, except 8am to 8pm on January 8th and 8am to 5pm on January 14th.

Where is the show?

The farm show is held at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex & Expo Center at North Cameron and Maclay streets in Harrisburg. The building contains more than one million square feet with 11 auditoriums and three arenas, as well as more than 9,000 parking spaces.

How much is parking?

Parking at the Farm Show facility and surrounding lots is $15 per car.

New this year, parking in the complex is by credit card only. Cash will not be accepted.

  • READ MORE: 2023 Farm Show parking will be cashless: What you need to know before you go

Parking is available on-site at the Farm Show Complex as well as off-site at Harrisburg Area Community College on Wildwood Park Drive and far east of the complex at Elmerton Avenue and Sycamore Street. A free shuttle service is provided.

Handicapped parking is available at all parking lots managed by the complex. Individuals can also be dropped off at the Cameron Street Lobby Circle for an even shorter walk.

With the theme “Gathering More, Together,” the 31st oil sculpture is unveiled at the Pennsylvania Farm Show in Harrisburg, Jan. 6, 2022. Dan Gleiter | [email protected]

Where is the oil sculpture?

You can’t go to the Farm Show and not visit the oil sculpture. This is one of the hallmarks of the show. Each year the oil sculpture follows the theme of the Farmer’s Show. This year’s theme is Rooted in Progress.

The sculpture is a longtime tradition at the fair and was created from about 1,000 pounds of oil donated by Land O’Lakes in Carlisle.

What’s new this year?

Goat Yoga will be held in the New Holland Arena Concourse.

Meanwhile, Llamas will appear on January 10 at the Equine Arena.

Look for a conservation exhibit in the Giant Expo Hall with raised beds and giant sunflowers, a popular rainfall simulator and innovative equipment.

When will the restaurant be open?

The food court is one of the Farm Show’s biggest attractions. This is where you can eat a buffet of Pennsylvania foods, from maple candy to chicken corn soup, shoo-fly pie, barbecue pork and potato donuts.

Opens noon to 9pm on January 6 with a preview day including free parking.

On that day, the Pennsylvania Dairy Farmers Association will host an 11 a.m. kickoff to promote “Fill a Cup with Hope,” a partnership between Feeding Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Dairy Farmers Association and the American Dairy Association Northeast. This year the Dairymen are also celebrating 70 years of serving milkshakes at the Farm Show.

Farm Show milkshake pop-up event at West Shore Plaza

The new orange cream milkshake. Pop-up milkshake event Farm Show takes place at West Shore Plaza in Lemoyne. It’s one of several the Pennsylvania Dairy Farmers Association holds throughout the month in central Pennsylvania. December 9, 2022 Dan Gleiter | [email protected]

What’s new in dining?

There is always new food and this year is no exception. The Dairymen will be drinking orange cream milkshakes as part of their 70th birthday celebrations. PA Mushroom Farmers is releasing a Mixed Mushroom Steak Burger. Made with a blend of 60% grass-fed beef and 40% mushrooms, the burgers will be served on Martin’s potato rolls with cheese, sauteed mushrooms and Alabama BBQ sauce. The PA Vegetable Growers Association is selling a veggie burger for the first time.

Will I see the chicks?

Unfortunately, poultry, including chickens and ducks, are banned from the Farm Show due to bird flu. Back in April 2022, the state ordered a ban on poultry and egg displays at county fairs to protect the state’s poultry.

“Pennsylvania’s farm fairs are important educational events for our youth,” said Russell Redding, state secretary of agriculture. “But the risk to our poultry farmers and our economy outweighs the benefit of exhibiting poultry at fairs when avian influenza is an imminent threat. The very real experience of weighing the risks against the benefits is also a hugely important part of agricultural education.”

Poultry such as chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, guinea fowl, quail, pheasants, emus and ostriches are most susceptible to bird flu, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. Highly pathogenic avian influenza is highly contagious and often fatal to birds.

Which celebrity will be cooking on the PA Preferred stage?

Each year, the PA Preferred Culinary Connection stage produces a full schedule of non-stop cooking demonstrations, primarily featuring PA chefs and merchandise groups. They also highlight a top chef.

This year’s celebrity is Leah Cohen, a judge on PBS’s Great American Recipe, a guest judge on Food Network’s Battle of the Siblings, and a contestant on Bravo’s Top Chef. She has also appeared on “Good Morning America,” “Chopped” and “Beat Bobby Flay.” The chef and owner of New York’s Pig & Khao restaurant will appear at noon and 2 p.m. on January 7.

The best time to travel

The first weekend is usually busy at the complex and parking lots are known to fill up quickly. Crowds often dissipate late on Sunday afternoons/evenings. As for weekdays, it depends on the number of school groups and the weather. Farm Show organizers say the best time to arrive is between 9am and noon and the complex is often busiest between 3.30pm and 5.30pm

What to wear?

Wear comfortable clothing such as jeans, boots or sneakers. A clothes check is available in the Cameron Street lobby.

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