The state fair defines the autumn season in Texas. On the grounds of Fair Park you can milk a cow, eat a deep fried carrot cake, play carnival games until you win a life-size unicorn, and ride the largest Ferris wheel in the United States.
On October 18 the State Fair of Texas closed its gates for the 129th year. It was the most popular in its history; ticket sales were up 10 million from last year. So how does something as old school as a state fair keep drawing in the masses? A combination of deep-seated nostalgia, community pride, and, well, corn dogs.
Mariah Tyler is a digital photo editor at Travel+Leisure. You can follow her on Instagram at @mphbox.