Governor DeWine Celebrates Opening Day at the Ohio State Fair

Governor DeWine, First Lady DeWine, Lt. Governor Husted, and Second Lady Husted cut the ribbon celebrating the opening day of the 2022 Ohio State Fair.

(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Today, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, First Lady Fran DeWine, Lt. Governor Jon Husted, and Second Lady Tina Husted celebrated the grand opening of this year’s Ohio State Fair.

“It is so good to be back at the Ohio State Fair, it’s very, very exciting,” said Governor DeWine. “The fair offers us 12 days to come together and celebrate the great state of Ohio  and everything we have in common.” 

Following a cabinet meeting at the fairgrounds and the celebratory ribbon cutting ceremony,  Governor and First Lady DeWine joined members of their family to enjoy the sights and sounds of the fair and to sample the fair’s signature food selection.

Governor DeWine and his family also joined Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Director Mary Mertz to celebrate the official opening of the new Exploring Oil and Gas in Ohio accessible play area at the fair’s Natural Resources Park.

“The Natural Resources Park offers a slower pace for families to learn about our state’s resources,” said Governor DeWine . “This new play area not only teaches children about the oil and gas industry, but it gives them a fun way to stretch their minds and work out their energy while enjoying the state fair.”

ODNR consulted with Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities to create this accessible space that all visitors can enjoy.

“We know how important play is to children of all ages and abilities and this new addition to our park offers amazing and low impact entertainments for kids at the state fair,” ODNR Director Mertz said.  “All visitors will enjoy learning about mineral exploration, transportation and production while our youngest guests can take a break from the midway to run and wiggle.”

Governor DeWine and First Lady DeWine plant a bur oak tree with their grandkids at the Ohio State Fair.

In keeping with tradition, the Governor also planted a bur oak tree in the Amphitheater at the Natural Resources Park at the Ohio State Fair on Wednesday evening. Governor DeWine has planted a tree at the Natural Resources Park each year that he’s been Governor.

“I am honored and excited to continue the tradition of planting trees at the Ohio State fairgrounds,” said Governor DeWine. “All the trees planted by governors in the past contribute to the health and well-being of all Ohioans by providing shade, improving air quality, and creating wildlife habitat.”

The diverse species of trees planted in and near the amphitheater over the years helped the Natural Resources Park to become an official arboretum in 2015. With more than 100 species represented, the park is designated as a Level II-accredited Arboretum through the ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program.

Governor DeWine and Family Overnight at the Fairgrounds

To conclude the day, the DeWines and several of their grandchildren stayed at the fairgrounds to spend the night in a yurt at the Natural Resources Park.

For decades in Ohio, many Governors have chosen to follow the tradition of spending the night at the Ohio State Fair.

Governor DeWine, First Lady DeWine, and several of their grandkids sit outside of their campsite in the ODNR Natural Resources Park.

The ODNR Natural Resources Park is in the southeast corner of the fairgrounds and is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily during the Ohio State Fair. All the activities in the park are free with admission to the Ohio State Fair.