RALEIGH, N.C. — It's never to early to talk about your state fair. So, let's do it. One of the biggest attractions, literally, is coming to the North Carolina State Fair in October. Hint: It's ginormous, it's round and it has a lot of lights. It's a staple at most fairs and usually towers over everything in its path. What is it? If you guessed the Ferris wheel you're correct!
Get ready -- the biggest traveling Ferris wheel, in North America, will make its North Carolina debut at the 2019 NC State Fair in October.
How freaking big is this Ferris wheel?
According to information from the NC State Fair office, it's 155 feet tall, or about 15 stories high and towers 62 feet over Dorton Arena. It will be parked between the historic arena and Hillsborough Street with a panoramic view of over 15 miles.
Manufactured in the Netherlands by Lamberink, the wheel is assembled with an 80-ton crane from 500 pieces in 800 man hours. A total of 36 enclosed six-person gondolas will hold 216 fairgoers at a time for the 10-minute ride. The giant wheel boasts 524,000 individual LED lights, six miles of electrical wiring and weighs 400,000 pounds.
“North Carolinians who visit the State Fair every year have their traditions, but we never stop trying to “wow” you,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “It will definitely be something fairgoers aren’t going to want to miss."
Here's what you need to know to ride it:
As a special attraction, the wheel requires a separate ticket and will not be included in the list of rides eligible for unlimited ride wristbands. Tickets for the wheel will be $6 in advance or $7 once the fair begins. The N.C. State Fair runs Oct. 17-27 at the State Fairgrounds in Raleigh.