The State Fair of Texas opens for the season

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It’s time for the State Fair of Texas, and from Sept. 25 to Oct. 18, concessionaires at the fair are showcasing their new foods and beverages, going beyond the standard corn dog.
Since 1886, the State Fair of Texas has been known as one of the country’s top fairs for creative foods, according to the BigTex website.
The Big Tex Choice Awards elects concessionary finalists for the fair’s top foods.
Fernie’s Holy Moly Carrot Cake Roly, created by Christi Erpillo, is this year’s winner for best tasting. This dessert features cinnamon-baked bread filled with carrot cake, cream cheese, graham crackers and nutmeg. After being fried, the rolls are drizzled with powdered sugar.
“The carrot cake rolls are the best things I have eaten today,” fairgoer J.R. Douglas said. “I will definitely get them again next year.”
Fernie’s is also the creator of the funnel cake dunkers, a skinnier version of the normal funnel cake. The dunkers make eating easier and come with a caramel macchiato sauce.
Fernie’s was the first to bring funnel cakes to the State Fair in 1981.
“People say it is a tradition to eat Fernie’s funnel cakes at the State Fair,” Fernie’s co-owner Johnna McKee said. “We started 48 years ago and love carrying on that tradition.”
For more sweets, Stiffler Concessions is offering limited edition fried Oreo flavors, which include red velvet, cookie dough and cotton candy.
“Inventing foods for the fair is a family activity,” Stiffler Concessions co-owner Tammy Stiffler said. “We all get together throughout the year and come up with ideas and experiment.”
The family business also introduced S’mores Beer, a crème brulée beer trimmed with graham cracker crumbs and topped off with a marshmallow.
This year is also the premiere of the new Coco-Rita drink, a topless fresh coconut filled with your choice of strawberry margarita or piña colada.
Visitors to the State Fair can now take advantage of Thrifty Thursdays. This new program features food discounts on traditional and new fair food items.
General admission for the fair is $18, and food and ride coupons are 50 cents each. For discounts, food locations and other information, visit bigtex.com.