What to Know if You’re Headed to the 2024 Florida Strawberry Festival

Holly Riddle

By Holly Riddle

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If you’re always up for traveling to a fun festival or fair, there’s one in Florida coming up soon that you’ll definitely want to add to your calendar. The Florida Strawberry Festival draws around half a million attendees to the aptly named Plant City, Florida, each early spring. Here’s what you need to know.

Store-front signage in Plant City, Florida that reads: "Florida Strawberry Festival."
P. Allison/Shutterstock

All Things Strawberries

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Florida — while perhaps more well-known for its citrus — is actually the second-largest strawberry-producing state in the country, growing about $477 million worth of strawberries. (The top-producing state is California.)

The Florida Strawberry Festival, which got its start in 1930, is a nod to the area’s strawberry growing heritage (about 10,000 acres of strawberries grow in and around Plant City every year) and, over the last near-century, the fair has grown in size and acclaim, becoming one of the top-rated fairs in not just Florida, but the entire country.

This year’s fair kicks off later this month, Feb. 29, and runs over 11 days, concluding on March 10.

Close up quart of strawberries on a rustic wooden table. Part of the summer fresh fruit crop from the farmer's market.
John Blottman/Shutterstock

Entertainment & Attractions

The family-friendly Florida Strawberry Festival packs in the entertainment, with grand stand-worthy musical acts performing throughout the fest. This year’s headliners include a mix of genres, from pop to classic rock, gospel to country. You can catch The Beach Boys, Black Eyed Peas, Flo Rida, Cody Johnson, Riley Green, and others.

Beyond the live music, the festival includes a large midway with rides and a flea market.

Gate admission tickets to the festival itself are $5–$15 for all-day admission, with additional tickets required for some (but not all!) of the concerts, ranging in price, though most are around $30–$50.

Of course, you can’t have a great fair without great fair food. Some past festival attendees have noted that the fair could do a little more to embrace its namesake and offer more fresh strawberry-based snacks and specialties, but, you can still find all your normal fair faves, like a plethora of fried foods on a stick. The one food you have to try before you leave? The fair’s iconic strawberry shortcake.

Balsamic Strawberry Cupcakes - Lauren Caris Cooks

Can’t Make it to the Florida Strawberry Festival?

If you’re not quite able to make it to the Florida Strawberry Festival, Feb. 29–March 10, but you still want to make tracks for some Florida strawberry-flavored fun, you do have a few other options. (Florida does grow the second-most strawberries in the country, after all!)

The Floral City Strawberry Festival takes place around the same time, March 2 and 3. The festival brings together more than 200 vendors, a beer and wine garden, live music, children’s activities and a crowd favorite — an all-ages messy pie-eating contest.

Ahead of the Florida Strawberry Festival, Live Oak, Florida’s Strawberry Fest takes place Feb. 24–25. Later in the season, March 23–24, Starke, Florida, hosts its 26th annual Strawberry Festival.

The Boca Strawberry Festival will return next year, January 2025, bringing with it lots of strawberry drinks and eats, themed fun and even a dog talent show.