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Top tips to get the most thrill out of your visit to PNE Fair

Heading out to BC’s very own PNE Fair is one of summer's most exciting activities for kids, and let’s face it—adults (Thank you, PNE Summer Night Concerts!). And, guilty pleasure or not, many of us find the PNE Marketplace and its entertaining exhibitors to be an exciting ride of its own, too.

While theme parks and fairs are filled with exhilarating rides, fun games and delicious food choices, they can also present some challenges, such as summer heat, colossal crowds and family members who are raring to go in different directions to do different things. Here are tips for your visit to this year’s PNE Fair that will help you outsmart the obstacles and ensure the whole family is having a thrilling good tiiiiiiiiiiime!

family on a roller coaster
  • 1. Purchase passes online and save

    Avoid losing precious ‘scream-at-the-top-of-your-lungs’ time on rides by buying your passes online in advance. BCAA Members get the best deal online with savings of 30% on gate and ride passes at the PNE Fair. Plus, visit our BCAA ToonCity and the BCAA booth to win some amazing prizes and meet Blue the Bear, our new mascot!

  • 2. Prepare the night before, not the morning of

    Spending time at the PNE can take up a whole day and evening (At least we hope it does!). So, packing the night before can help ensure you’ve brought all the essentials and can cut down the morning stress of getting everyone up and out the door.

  • 3. Key essentials to bring (use a backpack to keep your arms free)

    • Resealable plastic bags to protect your cell phone and camera when going on water rides
    • A plastic poncho in case it rains (yes, it’s possible in BC) or to keep you dry when riding the Flume at the PNE
    • Sunscreen, hat and sunglasses
    • Personal medication
    • Portable phone charger (texting, taking photos and video, and posting on social media can drain your cell phone battery)
family at a fair
  • 4. Stay hydrated, be sun safe and take breaks

    Drink plenty of water, especially if your family will be drinking the sugary stuff like milkshakes, soda or shaved ice (yum, yum and yum!). Wear a hat and apply sunscreen throughout the day. And, find time to sit and rest—watch a show or visit BCAA ToonCity for family friendly shows and BCAA’s Blue the Bear Dance Party to keep your family entertained and give your feet a break.

  • 5. Take a photo and remember what your family is wearing

    Just before you head out, take a picture of your child so you remember what they’re wearing. Have them standing up in the photo so it’s easy to visualize their height. You can also use the 'Child Find' photo station at our BCAA booth.

    Then, turn the tables around and have your kids take a close look at you and what you’re wearing. It can help them locate you in a crowd or if they need to give your description to a PNE Fair employee.

  • 6. Get a BCAA 'Child Find' sticker

    BCAA is part of the "Child Find" safety program that helps PNE Fair staff reunite lost children with their parents or caregivers. Visit any Guest Services booth to get a free Child Find sticker for your child to wear. Teach your child to identify PNE staff who will be wearing PNE branded blue t-shirts in case they need assistance.

  • Sticker - Find your child

  • 7. Set a meeting point as soon as you arrive

    Establish an easy-to-spot place to be your family’s meeting point in case you get separated (avoid busy entrance/exit ways and parking lots). You can also select other meeting spots as you enter the different areas of the park. Walk over to the meeting point with your kids to show them specifically where to go.

  • 8. Follow park rules

    Park accidents can happen when anyone ignores park rules by climbing a fence or entering a no-trespassing zone for example. Follow park safety signs and the instructions given by park employees to ensure a great and safe time.

  • 9. Walk the park backward to stay ahead of the crowd

    Note the direction people tend to follow and head the opposite way, or bypass larger crowds that often form near the entrance by starting off further into the park. You can check out the sights located near the entrance later in the day when less people will be arriving.

  • 10.Avoid long lines for rides

    Go to the most popular rides first thing in the morning when the crowds are smaller. If you’ve already seen a show, hit up the rides during major show times when many park visitors will be busy watching.