July 11: John Kay & Steppenwolf
July 12: Macy Gray
July 13: Phil Vassar
July 14: Hinder
July 15 and 16: “Wheel of Fortune” auditions
July 17: The Spinners
July 18: Joan Jett & The Blackhearts
July 19: Queen Nation (Queen Tribute)
July 20: America
July 21: Bret Michaels
July 22: Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo
July 23: Blackjack Billy & Jana Kramer
July 24: MercyMe
July 25: The Whispers
July 26: Trick Pony
July 27: Blaze of Glory: The Bon Jovi Experience
All 15 concerts and two nights of auditions are free with fair admission. Concert begin at 8 p.m. and seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. VIP seating is available in advance for an additional fee ($14-$22 per seat).
Other State Fair concerts
Those looking for a more intimate entertainment experience should check out the Promenade Stage, which offers free concerts every evening at 8 as part of the “State Fair at Night” series.
Most of the groups are local cover bands specializing in hits from the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s, so attendees will recognize the tunes.
Saturday, the fair will feature cover band Department of Rock, fittingly named for a performance in the state Capital.
“They’re a little-known government agency that intends to bring rock ’n’ roll into everybody’s household,” said operations manager Paul Gillingham, jokingly.
On July 20, Los Angeles-based group Funkalicious will perform R&B and Motown hits.
The concerts close July 27 with Wonderbread, a Jackson 5 tribute band.
Gillingham said the series (which has no assigned seating, unlike many of the Golden 1 Stage concerts) will create a high-energy nightly party.
“You can get up and move and groove, and you can bring the kids,” he said.