Visiting Capital Lakefair on a Budget

weekend events
Take advantage of a coupon (Wednesday) or a unlimited rides with a wristband (Thursday) so that your thrill-seekers can enjoy even more Lakefair rides.


By Alyssa Ramsfield

xeroxCapital Lakefair is a family favorite event in the summer. Personally, I can’t get enough of the food, rides, local vendors, and entertainment. All of that fun can really take a toll on your wallet. With a growing family I’ve spent a lot of time looking at experiences we can have that give us the most bang for our buck. Lakefair makes my family’s list of favorite local events so this year we are looking to enjoy every minute of it on a budget!

Saturday’s parade features a float filled with royalty and this year’s slogan “Thanks for the Memories.”

Lakefair begins on Wednesday, July 16 and runs through Sunday, July 20. There is plenty to do all week long.  Entertainment kicks off Wednesday afternoon and the stage will be filled until the final fireworks extravaganza on Sunday night. All genres are represented during live music, including a Beatles tribute band. Performances take place at Heritage Park and is completely free. It’s a great opportunity to dance, sing-a-long, and enjoy the ambience of Lakefair.

The food at Lakefair is first-rate. My family usually enjoys a couple of meals at the lake during this week. The Elephant Ears are crispy, sweet, and mouth-watering. The Demo Burger is packed with toppings and flavor. There are always plenty of options and affordable prices. If there is anything you do at Lakefair, the food needs to be at the top of the list.

The Summer Sidewalk Sale is a great spot to cruise with the family. Local merchants from all over the county set up shop to sell their products. Find deals and support small businesses.

On Friday night, the Lakefair Car Show will return to Marathon Park. Vehicles from all over the area will be on display. More than 20 awards will be given out in multiple categories. The show starts at 5:30 p.m. and is completely free to the public.

Saturday is full of fun for everyone! Sylvester Park will play host to booths to entertain children of all ages and their families during Lakefair’s Kid’s Day from 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. Saturday is also the Capital Lakefair Grand Parade. Local businesses and organizations hit the streets at 5:00 p.m. with floats, cars, music, dancing, and more. The key to enjoying the parade to the fullest is to find a good spot early along the parade route so you don’t miss a minute of the action.

lakefair fireworks
The grande finale of Lakefair includes a spectacular fireworks show synchronized to music.

One of the most expensive parts of Lakefair has to be the rides. My daughter is only 9 months old so we can easily skip them this year, but if you plan to enjoy the rides at Lakefair there is one day where you can get a great deal. Wristband Day is the second day of Lakefair (Thursday) and costs $35 per wristband. This is still a hefty amount if you are trying to save money, but it does give unlimited access to rides for the day giving you enough thrills for the entire summer.

Lakefair comes to a close on Sunday evening with the Grand Finale Fireworks Display. This year, KGY AM-1240 will provide a synchronized soundtrack with every burst and bang. The free, stunning event lights up the night sky of Downtown Olympia at 10pm.

Food, fireworks, entertainment, and action – there is so much fun to be had by the entire family at a reasonable price. Mark your calendar for July 16 – 20 to spend some quality time at this year’s Lakefair.  For complete Lakefair details, click here.


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