Envious of Iowans and their deep-fried sticks of butter? Didn't think so. But still, it'd be fun to check out a full-blown County Fair–pies, carnival rides, pig races (!), vegetable stands, games, deep-fried Oreos (yup), hayrides, a maize maze (amazing!), you name it–on a beautiful fall day right here in the big town, yes? Enter the excellent Queens County Farm Museum and their annual, hugely popular County Fair, which'll be happening this weekend, September 22 and 23, and, if you can get there without too much hassle, is likely to provide great fun-for-the-whole-family eats and entertainments.
The History of Floral Park’s Queen’s County Farm Museum
There's lots happening on this and many other autumn weekends at the Queens County Farm Museum, but first, a little background. Built in 1667 (the original version, anyway) in what is now Floral Park, the Queens County Farm is, at 47-acres, not only the largest piece of farmland in New York City, it is also the oldest continuously working farm in all of New York State. And this is not just a few token crops we're talking about… by far our favorite stand at the Union Square Greenmarket is run by the Queens County Farm crew–Fridays only–who not only seem to be able to grow the best of everything (kale, tomatoes, radishes, romaine, it doesn't matter, if they have it, it's really good), but is also staffed by incredibly helpful and friendly farmers. Plus, it’s nearly impossible to get produce from anywhere more local than Floral Park in Queens (unless, of course, you start a rooftop garden).
Events at the Queens County Farm Museum County Fair
Anyway, the Queens County Farm County Fair includes such expected goings-on as Blue Ribbon competitions in livestock, produce, home crafts, arts and crafts; carnival games and rides; tons of food (mostly healthy stuff, but also more, um, indulgent fare like the aforementioned fried Oreos); "creepy critter" exhibits and animal-petting areas; circus-ish acts and Irish dancers; historical reenactments and tours; corn-husking contests, pie-eating contests, lumberjack shows… the fun never ends! And even if you can't go this weekend, you might want to go some other weekend, for their Haunted House, for their Children's Fall Festival, for their Corn Maze, for their Apple Festival. The only obstacle here is getting there: the Queens County Farm Museum is easily accessible by car, but your public transportation options are limited to the dreaded subway AND bus ride.
Queens County Farm Museum Details
The Queens County Farm Museum is located in Floral Park, at 73-50 Little Neck Parkway; the County Fair happens this weekend, September 22 and 23, from 11:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. For more information, directions, and a complete schedule of all fall events, please see the Queens County Farm website, here.