August 23 - September 2, 2024

Date Night Ideas – The Colorado State Fair

Countless movies have shown young couples going to the carnival for a fun date — holding hands on the Ferris Wheel, eating cotton candy together, and playing carnival games to compete for prizes together.

young couple dressed in cowgirl and cowboy hats attending the state fair for a fun date

The Colorado State Fair has all this and much more, making it the perfect place for a spectacular date night.

This article will go over some of the best date night ideas at the Colorado State Fair.

Live Music and Concerts

Enjoy live music and spectacular performances, dance together, unwind and have fun as you listen to a variety of famous musicians. From soul-soothing relaxing country music to energetic rock ‘n’ roll and everything in between, the Colorado State Fair offers a wide variety of concerts and live performances of different genres. Plus, music is a great way to celebrate being together and enjoying the moment.

Olde Tyme Photo

Make the memories last with an Olde Tyme Photo, a popular attraction at the fair where couples can dress up and take a vintage-looking photo together that truly looks like they’ve gone back in time!

Add it to your photo album, post it on social media, or frame it and show it off in your living room — your guests are guaranteed to notice it!

Art Displays

If you and your partner appreciate beautiful art, then you’ll love the fine arts exhibition at the Colorado State Fair, where artists from around Colorado submit their original art pieces in the competition.

It’s not only paintings on display, but a wide variety of different types of art. Categories include painting, drawing, printmaking, photography, sculpture, ceramics, fiber art, mixed media, and jewelry/metalsmithing. So, if you or your partner are the “artsy” type, the prestigious fine arts exhibition at the Colorado State Fair is a must-visit.

The Ferris Wheel at the Colorado State Fair at dusk

Carnival Rides

No trip to the fair would be complete without getting on a few carnival rides together! Whether you and your date are adrenaline-junkies who love the exciting thrill of going on a roller coaster together, or if you prefer to simply relax and enjoy some of the “calmer” rides, there are many options to choose from.

A few of the most popular rides include:

The Ferris Wheel

Arguably the most “romantic” fair ride of all, the Ferris Wheel is a classic choice for couples, as it allows you to sit next to each other, hold hands, and enjoy a nice relaxing view of the stars from the top and the lights of the fairgrounds below — without the extreme “scare factor” of other carnival rides.

The Zipper

The Zipper is one of the scariest rides in the carnival, and definitely not for the faint of heart. However, daring couples who enjoy a good thrill together might also enjoy the Zipper if you can handle it! Unlike the Kamikaze, which only uses a swinging motion, the zipper cars rotate at the same time they are swung by the large metal arm they’re attached to — giving you a feeling of unpredictability that makes it even scarier.

Scared Boyfriend Letting Girlfriend Drive Bumper Car

Bumper Cars

There’s arguably no other carnival ride that evokes as much childhood nostalgia as bumper cars, and they’re guaranteed to strike up stories with your date about each other’s childhood adventures at the fair.

Even though bumper cars are a favorite among children, there’s no age limit to them, and they’re a great way to engage in some fun competition with your date.

(Be warned, though, you may compete against a number of feisty little whippersnappers who are eager to team up against the adults and bump them around!)

The Kamikaze

The Kamikaze (also known as the Hammer) is a ride that’s famous for being terrifyingly thrilling. It has a hammer-like look and swings around 360 degrees like a pendulum — giving you a surge of adrenaline every time it drops into freefall. Also, not a ride for the faint of heart.

The Scrambler

The Scrambler (also known as the Sizzler) is a fun carnival ride that isn’t quite as scary as the Hammer or Zipper since it’s doesn’t rely on fast drops from high in the air. Rather, the Scrambler is a ride that spins and rotates at ground level, making it a “milder” option for couples who want to have fun without the scare of the more extreme rides.


couple winning a teddy bear

Carnival Games

Carnival games are the perfect way to spend date night at the fair. Carnival games allow you to have a fun competition against each other, test your skill and luck, and take home prizes as a souvenir of your fun night together at the fair.

Great games for couples include:

Target games

Take aim at the bullseye — with speed and accuracy; you may walk away with a prize!

High Striker

Test your strength by striking a hammer that causes a puck inside the machine to shoot up. If you strike hard enough, the puck will hit the bell at the top and ring it, which means you’ve won!


This is a high-tech bowling game that you play on a machine – no need to visit the bowling alley!


In this game, you’re given 3-4 darts to start. Take aim and throw them at the balloons. If every dart successfully pops a balloon, you’ll win a prize!

A young African-American couple having fun at the county fair, playing a carnival game. They are laughing, excited that they won a prize.


A classic game where quick reflexes are key. Use the mallet to whack the moles as soon as they pop up, or they’ll getaway!

Ring Toss

Test your aim by trying to throw plastic rings around glass bottles. (It’s harder than it sounds!)

Basketball Free Throw

This may seem like a piece of cake — particularly if you’re good at shooting free throws with a regular basketball but don’t be fooled; these free throws are a lot harder than you’d expect because the ball is bouncier and the rim is smaller — which gives you less margin for error.



Carnival Food

Friends having fun at the amusement park at night

Sometimes the most romantic date is not in a fancy restaurant but on a stroll under the light of the fairgrounds. Carnival food is simply delicious and creates a relaxed and casual environment that is the perfect choice for an evening out.

Our top recommendations are the BBQ brisket, curly fries, cotton candy, and red candy apples, but there are so many choices in addition to the classic favorites; each year, they add something new to the Colorado State Fair.

There are, however, some admittedly less “romantic” foods than others. If you are trying to appear as the image of charm and elegance during your date, you may want to avoid the fried onion strips, turkey legs, or pickles which are tasty but can be a bit messy.

That being said, there are plenty of favorite fair foods that are a great choice for a date, including candied/caramel apples, cotton candy, fried ice cream, frozen yogurt, sorbets, slushies/snow cones, funnel cake, soft pretzels, briskets, potato salad, curly fries, nachos, chili dogs, and much more!


The Colorado State Fair – A Classic Date Night Idea!

The Colorado State Fair offers a unique experience for those seeking fun date night ideas, packed with entertainment, live music, delicious food, exciting rides, novel activities, and unforgettable moments.

If you’re looking to have a fun and unforgettable date night, a visit to the Colorado State Fair is guaranteed to turn an ordinary date into an exciting adventure.

Since the Colorado State Fair is only open 11 days a year, you definitely don’t want to miss it.

Mark your calendar, invite your sweetheart, and create a fun and lasting memory at the Colorado State Fair this summer.

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