RALEIGH (WTVD) -- The NC State Fair gets underway Thursday, October 16. Gates open at 3 p.m. and if you're one of the thousands planning to attend, buying tickets early through 11:59 p.m. Oct. 15 can help you save.
"Buying in advance is the best way to save and you can buy online or at one of 10 walk-up locations in the Triangle area," explained NC State Fair Spokesperson Heather Overton.
"Buying in advance saves you $2 off tickets which means adult tickets are $8 and children's tickets are $3 dollars," Overton said.
"There is a family deal that includes 4 admission tickets and 2 ride sheets," Overton explained. "You can save $32 off what you would pay at the fair if you purchase that in advance."
You can also take advantage of a free weekday lunch pass admission. If you enter through gates 9 or 1 between 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., you pay $10 and can eat lunch at the fair. Then, exit at the gate you entered through and you will get a full $10 refund.
Group discount tickets is another way to save. For adult tickets, you can purchase 40 or more tickets ahead of the fair for $6 per ticket. For children's group discounts, 40 or more tickets purchased early comes out to $2 per ticket.
For free admission: Seniors 65 and older and children under 5 are free every day. There's a military discount every day of $6 admission.
October 15 is Preview Day with $2 off admission and an all day ride wristband for $28 for unlimited rides from 3pm until midnight.
October 16 is Friday Frenzy Day. Students who show a report card or a student ID card can get in for $5 for a savings of 50% off the admission price. An unlimited ride wristband will be available on Oct. 16th for $34.
Oct. 20 is Senior Citizen's Day. Senior Citizens get a free Bojangles breakfast from 9am-11am at Dorton Arena.
Oct. 21 is Military Appreciation Day. The first 3,000 people in the fair will get a 4x6 US flag and a military appreciation parade begins at 11am.
Oct. 22 is Food Lion Hunger Relief Day. A donation of 5 cans of Food Lion brand food at the admission gate gets you one free admission ticket.
For more information on the NC State Fair click HERE.