Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor | Richard A. Ball, Commissioner
Joe Morrissey, 518-457-0752,
Dave Bullard, 315-487-7711 x 1377,

September 24, 2014

The 2014 Great New York State Fair Reaches Five Year High in Sponsorship Revenue with $2 Million in Sales

Sales and Sponsorship Effort Drove Revenue Higher While Bringing in More People

The Great New York State Fair added to its remarkable successes in 2014 by driving revenue from sponsors to a five-year high and through programs that contributed to record-breaking attendance, New York State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball and Acting State Fair Director Troy Waffner announced today. The Fair reported sponsorship sales of $1.99 million, a 16% increase from the final numbers for the 2013 Fair.  The number of sponsors also increased from 74 in 2013 to 90 in 2014, a 22% increase.

“Clearly, this was a year in which our State Fair was firing on all cylinders, with record crowds and increasing participation from sponsors.  This was another year of solid growth in our continuous effort to improve an agricultural fair and tourism draw that is becoming second to none,” said Commissioner Ball.

The State Fair worked to reengage national and regional brands that would benefit from exposure to the Fair’s large audience.  Chevrolet, sponsor of the Chevy Court series of free concerts by national acts and one of the Fair’s largest sponsors, signed its first-ever multi-year deal this year.  Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation reported some of its best results ever for its national tour backing its effort to create tolerance for the differences among people during its first-ever appearance at the Fair.  ACR Health moved its fundraising run to the Fair and reported record attendance and sponsorship.  Other vendors reported strong sales and successful interactions with fairgoers this year.

In addition, the Fair’s huge new video marquee at the main gate provides sponsors with year-round visibility and the ability to change marketing messages as needed.  Installed just days before the Fair opened and visible from a busy interstate highway, the marquee already has attracted attention from potential advertisers.

Four national brands and several regional brands that have never participated in the Fair have already begun discussions about participating in 2015.

“The Fair is a more exciting place to be, not only for New Yorkers but for the local, regional, and national companies that are responding so strongly to our rejuvenation and growth.  There are a few state fairs larger than ours, but we’re hearing from national companies that they want to do business with us first because of our focus on treating them well and treating fairgoers to a great time,” said Troy Waffner, Acting Director of the Great New York State Fair

The Fair’s other sales and sponsorship efforts focused on encouraging admission ticket sales and spending on the Fairgrounds.  Sponsors not only receive access to the Fair’s large audience but can receive other benefits as well.  Top sponsors can receive year-round visibility and naming rights.  The Fair also works with sponsors to secure space during the Fair for special promotional events. 

  • The new Adopt-A-Family program solicited corporate sponsors to purchase packages of tickets for struggling families.  Ticket packages were distributed through community agencies in Onondaga and Jefferson counties, which selected the recipients.  Packages included admission tickets for four people, a parking ticket, and coupons for the Fair’s signature cups of milk and baked potatoes. The pilot program provided 350 sets of tickets, which exceeded the goal of 300.
  • The Bubble Blast Run 5K race, a family fun run featuring obstacles of inflatable play equipment covered in bubbles, joined the Fair’s family of events this year.  The non-profit agency that operates the run, ACR Health, reported that the event’s attendance tripled and sponsorship revenue also rose.  The Fair benefitted financially from the run, and also added to Fair attendance as each runner’s signup fee included admission to the Fair.
  • A program with the 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum and members of the 174th Attack Wing at Hancock Field not only put more people on the grounds but it also helped provide a new connection to the community to members of the military.
  • A new Fairgrounds map was created, saving thousands of dollars over the prior map.  Fairgoers reported finding the new map easier to read.  The cost of printing the map was covered by sales of advertising on the map, the first time that had been done.
  • The Fair also worked on mutual promotions with Syracuse University athletics and with the Syracuse Chiefs baseball team.

Those efforts helped contribute to a stronger bottom line and also to the significant rebound in attendance, which included setting new single-day attendance records twice in three days.  Fairgoers surveyed overwhelmingly rated changes at the Fair this year as very positive, in a year of more than two dozen new attractions and events.

The Sales and Sponsorship Department at the Fair be reached at 315-487-7711 x1237.

The New York State Fair, operated by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, runs from August 27 September 7, 2015.  The Fair’s mission is to showcase the best of New York agriculture while providing top-quality entertainment.

In addition to the annual New York State Fair, the Fairgrounds host dozens of agricultural events throughout the year, including some of the Northeast’s most prestigious horse and livestock shows.

The home of the Great New York State Fair is a 375-acre exhibit and entertainment complex that operates all year. A year-round schedule of events is available on the Fair’s website.  Find The Great New York State Fair on Facebook, follow @NYSFair on Twitter, and enjoy photos from the Fair at Also, New Yorkers are invited to send their ideas for the Great New York State Fair at

2014 Press Releases