Home » Business of Interest » Syracuse Winter Fair

Syracuse Winter Fair

“The idea of the Syracuse Winter Fair,” said Steve Becker, principal at Premier Promotions, and founder of the event, “is to bring summer into winter. It’s 72 degrees inside the Expo Center, free parking is right next to the center, and the cost is low, but The Winter Fair offers lots of things to see, do, taste, learn, and experience!”

The first thing you’d notice, speaking with Becker, is that you KNOW that voice. Was it the enthusiasm, the pace, the energy – all of those things, surely, but more surely because Becker has been a staple in CNY radio, and beyond. Since about 1997, though, he’s been active in promotions and event planning, and this will mark the 5th year the Syracuse Winter Fair will bring people from all over the state, Canada, and further away still, a taste of summer in the dark of winter. And we’re glad he’s taken on the job!

“The theme of the whole festival is COMMUNITY,” Becker says. “We have a great community, and the idea is to showcase, and to share. And have fun while we’re at it!”

The event will fill the Expo Center with rides, foods, entertainment, games, and surprises.

Visit the Mini-Midway: Winter Fair again will feature a Mini-Midway with rides that include: Roc-o-Plane, the Scrambler, the Spider, Giant Slide, the Sea Ray, Merry-go-round, Clown-Around Fun House and the family Dragon Coaster! Plus more to come.

Eat!: A staple of Winter Fair, Villa Pizze Fritte will be there along with Winter Fair favorites such as Kiki’s Authentic Greek Cuisine, BBQ with Limp Lizard, Hoffmann Hot Dogs, Coneys, and definitely there’s State Fair Sausage Sandwiches. Baked Potato Express, Pizza from Paradise Companies, Miss Prissy’s Soul Food, Our Vegan Corner, Sarita’s Spanish Cuisine, Dean’s Concession featuring chicken tenders, French fries and blooming onions, plus Paradise Companies ice cream. Beer, wine, lemonade, beverages, water and wine slushies. A complete list of food vendors and menus will be online in January at the Winter Fair website.

Entertainment: The entertainment lineup (thus far) for Winter Fair reads like a who’s-who of CNY greats! On the Amazon Winter Fair Stage you’ll find:

Friday February 2nd: Austin Jimmy Murphy, Custom Taylor Band, and Prime Time. 

Saturday February 3rd:  Jess Novak, The BlackLites, and classic rock from Dangerous Type. 

Sunday February 4th: a 60-minute Gospel Sunday program under the direction of Cora Thomas and wrapping up Winter Fair 2024 will be the legendary R&B/Funk/Soul group, Brownskin and Joe Driscoll.

Events/Demonstrations: The City and County will both be represented at the Fair with booths and information. Additional features will highlight an Irish Dancing competition sponsored by Your IT Department, and will include not only a judged contest, but a “People’s Choice” award. Each dance school participating will get a stipend, and the winning team is treated to unlimited tickets to the Midway.  

The Six Nations Native American dancers will perform, with a narration explaining the story behind the dances. There will be martial arts demonstrations with Karate John’s, Latino Dancing with La Familia, Multi-Cultural Entertainment with New Americans Diversity, and Gotta Dance. Sunday will feature a Black History Month Celebration, including Gospel music, African drumming, and a catwalk of fashion creators and models. There will be a complete schedule of entertainment and special features with times available in January at The Winter Fair website.

There will be ice sculptures sponsored by A-Verdi Storage Containers and Woodford Brothers; and fireworks, sponsored by Onondaga County. Did you know fireworks shine even brighter in the cold winter air

Big News This Year: The Legends of Syracuse University Athletics, from Football, Basketball and Lacrosse. Legend Athletics is working with players, past and present, to market their own NIL (Name, Image and Likeness) with apparel, events and branding. So back to Syracuse this winter come such legends as the Syracuse 8, Michael Owens, John Wallace, Lawrence Moten, Billy Owens, Rob Drummond, Scoop Jardine, Pearl Washington’s family, and more. Visitors can take home merchandise like a t-shirt or hoodie emblazoned with something like “Poetry.” (Poetry in Moten!) There will be Q&A’s with the stars – taking questions from YOU, the audience. And in the athletic contest areas, you might get a chance to shoot hoops or toss a football with a legend!

Winter Fair 2024 brings with it many benefits, both to you, the visitors, and to the greater community. The NAACP will be managing the Coat Check and will receive a portion of the proceeds. The Food Bank and Rescue Mission will be raising donations for their organizations. The Price Chopper/Market 32 Winter Fair Hoops will be back with attendees shooting baskets and winning prizes for donations to the Boys and Girls Club of Syracuse.

“And the way we do it all,” said Becker, “is because of our generous sponsors.”

The Presenting Sponsor for Winter Fair 2024 is Maguire Cars. Amazon brings you the Amazon Winter Fair Stage. Brand-new to the Winter Fair is AmeriCU, who will be providing Free Parking to Winter Fair 2024.

Additional sponsors include: A-Verdi Storage Containers with an Ice Sculpture, Woodford Brothers with an Ice Sculpture. Visit Syracuse and the City of Syracuse are Community Sponsors. Bass Pro, Karate John’s, Marriott Syracuse Downtown, ServPro of SW Onondaga County, D’Arcangelo CPAs, Michelob Ultra, Charles Signs, Seven O’s RV and Kiki’s Authentic Greek Cuisine.

Media sponsors: Radio Media Partner is Cumulus Media with 93Q, 95x, the SCORE 1260, SNGL; PBS Radio. NewsChannel 9 and WCNY are the TV Sponsors; CNY Latino, Eagle Newspapers, CNY Business Journal, Table Hopping Media and 55 Plus are the Print Sponsors. Park Outdoor is the Billboard Sponsor. Also thank you to Central 3, 5 & 6, Syracuse.com, Spectrum News and WAER for their coverage.

What better way to beat the post-holiday, middle of winter let-down than with much great entertainment, good food, and grand fun at the Syracuse Winter Fair!

Syracuse Winter Fair



Winter Fair 2024 In the Expo Center At the New York State Fairgrounds

Advanced sale tickets are available now at www.nyswinterfair.com. Advanced tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for teens/pre-teens and seniors. Children 10 and under will be admitted free of charge. At the door, admission is $7 for adults and $5 for teens/pre-teens and seniors. Children 10 and under will be admitted free of charge. Parking is free thanks to AmeriCU.

Friday, February 2, 2024, 3pm to 9pm 

Saturday, February 3, 2024, 11am to 9pm 

Sunday, February 4, 2024, 11am to 5pm 

Nancy Roberts