Honor and celebrate Pennsylvania’s unique agricultural heritage, innovations, and bright future at the 108th Pennsylvania Farm Show, Jan. 6-13 at the Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg. This year’s theme, “Connecting Our Communities,” recognizes the vital role the agricultural industry plays in connecting PA’s diverse cultures, generations, and communities across the state. As the largest indoor agricultural exposition under one roof in the U.S., this is one event you won’t want to miss, especially all those delicious and taste-tempting Farm Show foods and beverages made fresh from PA farm products!
Payment for the paid parking lots is once again cashless with Visa, Mastercard, America Express and Discover credit/debit cards, as well as Visa and Mastercard pre-purchased gift cards accepted. The food court’s vendors are accepting both cash and credit cards this year.
New to the farm show for 2024:
1. Lovin’ Them Baby Goats
Snuggling with baby goats debuted last year, taking the 2023 Farm Show by storm. It was so popular it’s back again for 2024! Baby animals are always a Farm Show favorite, so here’s your chance to snuggle with some of the cutest! While you’re giggling at the baby goats’ antics, you’ll be helping to support future Farm Show fun and youth scholarships.
2. So You Want to Be a Farmer
Providing fun for all ages, visit the expanded, interactive, and informative “So You Want to Be a Farmer” exhibit in the Main Hall to learn what it takes to succeed in today’s agricultural environment. Here you can pick the brains of professionals, including experts from PA’s new Agricultural Business Development Center, PASA Sustainable Agriculture, the Rodale Institute, and the Pennsylvania No-Till Alliance – your destination to feed your progress!
3. Cow Cosmetology
Thinking about ditching the corporate life for the peaceful and bucolic life of a cow cosmetologist?! Here’s you chance to see what it takes to get the cows, sheep, and goats looking their beauty pageant best in the Fitting Competitions, Jan. 6-7. Teams of three will fluff, dry, groom and clip their animals to show off their (the animals, that is) best features and ready for the red carpet. You can also check out a “fitting clinic” for your favorite species to learn what it takes to make livestock shine in the show ring.
4. Some Green Thumb Fun
Looking for some new ideas to expand or change up your flower and veggie gardens? Visit the GIANT Expo Hall’s Conservation Exhibit for the latest innovations and info on how PA farmers are working for cleaner air and water; watch the popular rainfall simulator in action; and learn about the newest, innovative equipment for your little slice of gardening paradise.
5. Magnificent Mullets
Did you know Pennsylvanians took home the crown in both the women’s and kid’s divisions of the 2023 USA Mullet Championships?! It’s perhaps only fitting then that PA host its own mullet championship at this year’s Farm Show. If you think your mullet has what it takes to be named champion, you can enter the contest that takes place center stage in the Main Hall on Jan. 8 (or just come to watch all the hairy fun). Best of luck to all contestants in this wacky, fun, and friendly competition!
6. Food Frenzy at the Food Court
It seems there’s always something new for you to savor at the Food Court and this year is no different. Delve into the culinary heritage of your favorite Eastern European family member or friend with pierogies and potato pancakes, the perfect comfort food for those cold winter nights ahead. Afterwards, stroll on over to the Main Hall Stage to connect with PA Dutch culture with a Daily Dose of Dutch where you can learn what Willkum means, how to read a hex sign, and even bake a shoo fly pie!
7. Food Frenzy
There’s something new every day, indeed almost every hour, at the PA Preferred® Culinary Connection stage in the Main Hall where Pennsylvania’s most talented chefs prepare their masterpieces. This year’s all-star line-up includes Philadelphia’s own Chef Chris Scott who has served as Executive Chef for CNN and Time Warner; was a finalist on Bravo’s Top Chef, a competitor on OWN’s The Great Soul Food Cook Off, and judge on Beat Bobby Flay, Bobby Flay’s Triple Thread; and has authored a cookbook and founded three restaurants. Visit the Culinary Connection to sample celebrity recipes prepped by future stars from PA culinary schools, grab a cookbook, and begin your own PA farm-to-table culinary adventures!
8. New Milkshake Flavor
It’s party time at the milkshake stand as the Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association celebrates The GIANT Company’s 100th anniversary with a brand new and delicious Salted Caramel milkshake! Along with its traditional Farm Show legen-DAIRY milkshake flavors of chocolate, vanilla, and mixed, the new salted caramel is the perfect way to celebrate and honor the GIANT Company’s 100 years of feeding Pennsylvanians and support their local communities and the farming industry.
9. New Classes and Competitions
Learn what it takes to grow a prize Purple Sweet Potato or Ludacrisp apple, a champion Czech Frosty rabbit, or see what youngsters’ imaginations can produce for the new Veggie Decorating Contest – all just a sample of the new classes and competitions being offered at this year’s Farm Show.
10. Stop by visitPA
Want even more Pennsylvania-fueled fun? Stop by visitPA’s booth in the Main Hall to learn everything our beloved commonwealth has to offer throughout the year. From blooming gardens to food trails, we’re in the know about all things agriculture and can help you fill your 2024 calendar with weird and wonderful activities that are perfect for all ages!
To view the full PA Farm Show schedule, visit the PA Farm Show website. Follow us on Facebook, X (Twitter), and Instagram to stay up-to-date on even more great ideas and places to visit around our state. You’ll never miss an update when you sign up for our monthly Happy Thoughts e-newsletter.