The Eastern States Exposition (ESE), located on 175 acres of land in West Springfield, Massachusetts, hosts over 100 shows and events per year. Created in 1916 as a not-for-profit organization, the Eastern States Exposition Foundation states its purpose is to “maintain and develop programs that promote youth education, agriculture education, history and leadership.” Therefore, ESE represents a valuable resource in the area for local residents, as well as visitors from throughout New England. The underlying emphasis of ESE, and all its shows and events, is to preserve the “New England heritage,” honoring its “pioneering spirit.”
Eastern States Exposition offers year-round events, both indoors and outdoors, depending on the season and the weather. It is New England, after all! West Springfield residents enjoy free parking year-round, while non-residents pay only $5 per event, excluding The Big E held annually over 17 days in September.
The Big E is renowned as the northeast’s largest fair and New England’s “Autumn Tradition” every September. Just for an idea of this fair’s popularity: in 2010, The Big E recorded 1,228,418 people over the 17-day period – third largest attendance in its history! The Big E typically runs from mid-September through the first weekend in October. Because there is so much to see and do during the event, The Big E offers 17-day value-priced tickets.
In addition to animals, crafts, entertainment, exhibits, rides, shopping, daily parades, and food from around the world, some of the key events and exhibits at this annual extravaganza include the following:
- Avenue of States
- Mardi Gras parade
- Storrowton Village Museum
- The Big E Super Circus
The Big E is not the only event hosted at Eastern States Exposition, which literally offers something for everyone – from kids to adults – throughout the year. For instance, during school vacations, ESE features theme-based children’s programs; then at least once during the year, the Shrine Circus comes to ESE. Adults can enjoy numerous events, such as concerts, wholesale shows, a bridal expo, and a Christmas craft fair. In addition, various animal shows feature different breeds of dogs, horses, sheep, goats, cattle, and even alpacas.
Other featured events and shows held at ESE at various times throughout the year are the following:
- The “Original” Western Mass Home & Garden Show
- Antique & Modern Firearms Show
- N.E. Water Garden & Ornamental Fish Show
- East Coast Gem, Mineral, & Fossil Show
- New England Snowmobile Expo
- Fiber Festival of New England
One thing is for certain, anyone who lives in West Springfield, or plans to visit, will have a difficult time choosing which events to attend. If you don’t want to miss your favorite event, contact ESE today for specific event details, dates, and prices.
Eastern States Exposition
1305 Memorial Avenue
West Springfield, MA 01089